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Author Topic: Pseudopod 93: The Land of Reeds  (Read 9995 times)

Bdoomed

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on: June 07, 2008, 06:55:52 AM
Pseudopod 93: The Land of Reeds

By Patrick Samphire

Read by Cheyenne Wright

The dead, he had discovered, had mouths and could speak, but they could not be heard.

Or, they could not be heard by the living: the dead talked among themselves with voices of sand and dust. Amenemhet did not wish to talk to the dead. A man who has been murdered wishes to speak to those still living, to lay testament before them, to give warning.

The dead, in their crowded voices, said that Re no longer travelled through the underworld each night. They said that his face was now no more than a ball of fire in the sky. There were no more demons in the underworld, no Apep the serpent, no Amemet the great devourer, no gates, no judges, no scales. There was no Land of Reeds.




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DarkKnightJRK

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Reply #1 on: June 07, 2008, 09:27:24 AM
I was also an avid fan of Ancient Egypt as a kid--I read up on all the text I could find and I never missed one of those "reveal the Pyramid's tomb" shows. Hell, the first real story I ever wrote revolved around it--I was 11 and it was a COLLOSAL POS, but still, it inspired me.



Chivalrybean

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Reply #2 on: June 08, 2008, 12:42:28 AM
This ranks as one of the best read Pseudopod episodes to date that I have heard.

This also to me was one of my favorite episodes ever in the 'not very scary' set of episodes, and I mean that in the best of ways.

The story was strong, made sense, and was fairly easy to follow. The names took me just a bit to distinguish from each other, but many times the context was enough.

I always like seeing the ghost get the bad guy. I'm also glad my limited knowledge of Egyptian history and lore did not hinder my enjoyment of the story.

Overall, a top notch story, episode, and reading.
 

The Space Turtle - News that didn't happen, stories to entertain.


zZzacha

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Reply #3 on: June 08, 2008, 12:44:22 AM
Great story! The wonderful dark voice was perfect for the story, I really loved that. It brings a nice dark touch to the story.

I'm also quite fond of the Ancient Egyptian time, well exhibited in this story, though I could do with some more cultural references to the period. Always great to dive into another culture IMO

Also, Stargate fan here too! The movie was greatgreat! For weeks after first seeing that movie, I fantasized about traveling to other worlds. I had some nice dreams :]

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Listener

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Reply #4 on: June 11, 2008, 01:08:19 PM
I really liked this reading.  Wright did not go overboard with the accents, and to my surprise, he really played the child characters exceptionally.

The story was good.  Perhaps I missed something between visiting the woman who talks to the dead and leading the dead army to possess the murderer, but that seemed kind of fast.

Overall, I liked it.  Great details.

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eytanz

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Reply #5 on: June 11, 2008, 01:53:16 PM
I really liked the story. I liked hearing the haunting story from the ghost's point of view, and the Egyptian setting, underused in non-mummy related stories, made it feel really fresh and original. And the reading was really excellent. My favorite PP story in a long time.

Amenemhet's (after)life would have been a lot simpler, and his family would have been spared a lot of grief, if he had just remembered the golden rule - always pay attention to the creepy little girl.



DKT

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Reply #6 on: June 12, 2008, 04:01:16 PM
It was great to hear a ghost story set in ancient Egypt.  The setting was crisp and vivid and the characters and conflict worked very well for me.  I've really enjoyed Patrick Samphire's stories here.  Cheyenne Wright's reading was, of course, fantastic. 


Chivalrybean

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Reply #7 on: June 13, 2008, 01:00:35 AM
It was great to hear a ghost story set in ancient Egypt.  The setting was crisp and vivid and the characters and conflict worked very well for me.  I've really enjoyed Patrick Samphire's stories here.  Cheyenne Wright's reading was, of course, fantastic. 

I liked this better than the Wester Front one. The visuals were great on both, but this one seemed more realistic and it made more sense.

The Space Turtle - News that didn't happen, stories to entertain.


Sylvan

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Reply #8 on: June 13, 2008, 04:37:45 PM
I have to wonder:  if the story is told from the point-of-view of the traditional "monster" (in this case, the ghost) does it change the nature of the horror?  I have to say, the real monster was the murderer ... not his victim.  But I found it hard to feel this as "horror" rather than "dark fantasy".

Those two cross over quite a bit, don't they?

In any event, this was a spectacular tale and I found myself almost chanting "Re is dead..."



CammoBlammo

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Reply #9 on: June 13, 2008, 11:18:14 PM
Excellent story. Probably one of the best PPs I've heard.

I do have one question though, and it may just me missing something obvious. If the natural tendency was for ghosts to fade and forget, why didn't the child?



Cerebrilith

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Reply #10 on: June 14, 2008, 01:02:19 AM
I'm loathe to go against the crowd on this one but the story was pretty blah to me.  I failed to be scared, creeped out, or really feel anything from this story.  For all that it involved ghosts it didn't feel like horror to me.



Chivalrybean

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Reply #11 on: June 14, 2008, 01:44:15 AM
Yeah, not scary at all, but a great story anyways.

The Space Turtle - News that didn't happen, stories to entertain.


birdless

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Reply #12 on: June 17, 2008, 01:50:12 AM
I'm loathe to go against the crowd on this one but the story was pretty blah to me.  I failed to be scared, creeped out, or really feel anything from this story.  For all that it involved ghosts it didn't feel like horror to me.
I regrettably have to agree. I had such high hopes, too, because i find ancient Egyptian culture fascinating.



Listener

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Reply #13 on: June 18, 2008, 08:40:44 PM
Yeah, not scary at all, but a great story anyways.

I think this is the issue with horror at large.  Horror as a genre name evokes the thought that you should be horrified.  But horror is also sort of a catchall for vampires, zombies, ghosts, et al.  I think this story would've been equally at home on PodCastle.  After all, "High Spirits" was a movie with ghosts in it, but it wasn't very horrifying at all.

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Dwango

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Reply #14 on: July 02, 2008, 03:11:15 PM
I think the horror in this one is about the situation of the ghost.  The ghost's family goes through such horrible trauma at the hands of his murderer.  Yet, as time passes, he finds it harder to care about his family.  That made me feel creepy in that I could not imagine not caring about the fate of my family.  The idea that death makes us lose what makes us human is a terrible thought, that any power could make us not care about loved ones.



Cerebrilith

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Reply #15 on: July 02, 2008, 03:24:27 PM
I think the horror in this one is about the situation of the ghost.  The ghost's family goes through such horrible trauma at the hands of his murderer.  Yet, as time passes, he finds it harder to care about his family.  That made me feel creepy in that I could not imagine not caring about the fate of my family.  The idea that death makes us lose what makes us human is a terrible thought, that any power could make us not care about loved ones.

This is probably the best argument for why this story qualifies as horror.  At first there's the ghosts inability to do anything but watch his family struggle and flounder without him and then his eventual loss of his love for them along with his sense of self does seem rather awful.



JoeFitz

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Reply #16 on: July 03, 2008, 02:31:07 AM
Great PP and perfect reader for this story!



Sgarre1

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Reply #17 on: July 10, 2008, 03:17:12 AM
This was another solid story.  More on the dark fantasy side than horror (Dwango & Cerebrilith are right in that the duality of initially wanting to reconnect with the living family and then the eventual decline into forgetting them is horrific, but for me it would have to be played up a bit more to actually make the story horror) but still, entertaining and interesting and not just because I've been working on a story for 2 years that features a being's Ka walking through unsuspecting people. Luckily, it's much different despite that detail.

The reading was also good.  The just slightly over-dramatic take was perfect for a story set in the mythic past.

All around, a stand-up job.

Thanks for listening

“(Egypt) is a great place for contrasts: splendid things gleam in the dust.”
Gustave Flaubert, letter to Louis Bouilhet (12/1/1849), FLAUBERT IN EGYPT

 



The Dunesteef

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Reply #18 on: July 15, 2008, 06:06:12 AM
Good story, nice reading.  I had a good time with this one.  I really liked the setting in this.  It's nice to step out of the "western" world a little and get a taste of a culture that you hear a lot less about in our society.  Especially for an uneducated lunk like myself.

Check out some great stories at The Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine


crem8d_boogaloo

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Reply #19 on: October 09, 2008, 10:18:52 PM
Yes. Yes, yes, yes.  After I heard this story, I emailed links and burned it and a couple of others for friends and Pseudopod gained some fans.  HIGHLY recommend for anyone interested in Egyptian mythology or really awesome stories.



Thaurismunths

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Reply #20 on: October 12, 2008, 02:33:21 PM
It astounds me that I haven't commented on this story already. Apparently I've been slacking!

Great story. Not scary, but definitely worthy of Pseudopod, and Cheyenne did a great job voicing it.
I really dig other cultures and how colorful and inventive their concepts of the supernatural are, even if it's only because they're new to me, when compared with the American/Christian ideas.

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Ellspacer

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Reply #21 on: October 27, 2008, 10:45:38 PM
Excellent story. Probably one of the best PPs I've heard.

I do have one question though, and it may just me missing something obvious. If the natural tendency was for ghosts to fade and forget, why didn't the child?

I think it didn't know the way to the land of reeds, and needed led there. Unfulfilled purpose overriding deterioration, I suppose.
At the outset, I thought this was gonna be one of those Genesis-style "begat" things and prepared myself for a cumbersome story, more to be endured than enjoyed. Quickly sped up, though , and almost seemed in a bit of a haste to end. Solid story, well told. 



Thaurismunths

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Reply #22 on: October 28, 2008, 02:11:37 AM
Excellent story. Probably one of the best PPs I've heard.

I do have one question though, and it may just me missing something obvious. If the natural tendency was for ghosts to fade and forget, why didn't the child?

I think it didn't know the way to the land of reeds, and needed led there. Unfulfilled purpose overriding deterioration, I suppose.
It's been a little while since I've heard this one, but I think the child was a god and not a ghost. I needed to go to the land of reeds to claim its throne.

How do you fight a bully that can un-make history?


Unblinking

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Reply #23 on: October 20, 2009, 06:43:07 PM
(snip)
It's been a little while since I've heard this one, but I think the child was a god and not a ghost. I needed to go to the land of reeds to claim its throne.

It was sort of both, I think.  Pharoahs were considered to be gods, right?  But their flesh bodies don't live forever, so after they die they are both ghost and god.



Unblinking

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Reply #24 on: October 20, 2009, 06:45:11 PM
The story was adequate and the reading was great, as I've come to expect from Cheyenne.

I really enjoy Egyptian mythology stories, so I really wanted to like it more.  But in the end the setting was the only thing that made it different from hundreds of other "ghost comes back for revenge" stories, and the placement of the child pharoah guide was a little too convenient for my tastes.



Millenium_King

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Reply #25 on: July 16, 2010, 10:06:21 PM
This was a solid story.  I enjoyed it quite a bit.  However, I thought it plodded along in some places - although never slowly enough to lose my interest.  The biggest gripe I have with it is that I didn't understand how the protag knew the map to the underworld etc. yet no one else did.  His role sounded akin to mayor, not High Priest (granted, I do not know fully the scope of his title).  I also hoped for a slightly darker ending, but not everything can be a downer I suppose!  But besides that, I really liked this story.

The language was good and never came across as clumsy, but I wouldn't go so far as to say it was great: again, nothing really stood out for me.

Great reading, great intro and outro.

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