Sunday, April 12, 2015

“And he said, Behold now, I am old, I know not the day of my death” – Genesis 27:2

The descent down the stairs of Dreamwood Terrace felt like an eternity. Each step lowering me more and more towards where that women lay. The closer I got the more strongly I could feel her presence. The chill began to envelope me. She was laying out on the pavement underneath apt no 43.

She looked dead. Maybe she was dead. Maybe she has always been dead. It would create a nice little sense of irony.

“Need a hand?” I watch my own hand extend to reach her as if from afar. As if I’m no longer the one controlling my body. She grabs my hand but I don’t feel anything. My body has gone completely numb.

“Why help me? You’re the one that put me here in the first place.”

“Self-defense sister. The law views it as a legitimate excuse so why shouldn’t God?”

She stares at me for a couple of seconds then before she leaves the question that has taken every ounce of strength I have to not ask.

“Hey. What’s your deal? Why can’t you just leave me alone?”

She stares at me in disbelief.

“What have I done to offend you to such a great degree?”

Again she stares. Again she says nothing.

“Look. I just want to go home and you coming in here and making me push you out a window is not good for my image.”

“Your image? Since when do you care about your image? You want to know why I keep bugging you?  Because you insist on messing up the Plan. You insist on trying to undermine my authority. Once you stop ending lives before their time then I’ll leave you alone.”

“Ending lives?” I race through my memory. Trying to think of anything she could mean. “What do you mean ‘ending live’?”

“Are you really so dense? I mean you killing people that aren’t supposed to die.”

“Are you serious? That’s what this is about? I haven’t killed anyone. Interfering with you pointless little plan is not why I came here. Call me Ripley cause believe it or not, not everything I do is because of you. I don’t wake up and think ‘Oh. How am I gonna piss off Catherine today?’ I have my own life and I’m just trying to live it. So please. Tell me what you mean by ‘Ending Lives.’ Cause if there are actually people dying outside of your Plan well then, sister, you’ve got a much bigger problem to worry about than me.”


It’s a beautiful day/Sky falls it feels like/It’s a beautiful day/Don’t let it…

Damn. That was a nice alarm clock.

Getting out of bed is always the hardest after hearing the monotonous chord progression of “Beautiful Day” that U2 cursed the world with.

I think I had a dream last night and I think it meant something. But it might have been a memory. It was all just so vivid and real.

I go over to the diner next door to get some eggs. I see a little Asian man sitting alone at a booth. There wasn’t anything special about him but for some reason I was drawn to him.

“Mind if I sit here?”

The man motioned to seat as if to say “Not at all.”

“So,” the man looked tired. Worn out. “What’s your story?”

The man looked up at me. Shocked I would ask such an intrusive question. “A long one.”

“Isn’t everyone’s?” I waited for more of a response. Any sign that he was going to say anything. “Alright fine. Keep your secrets.”

“My name is Yesu.”

“Yesu huh? That’s an interesting name. I’m Clive. Nice to meet you Yesu.”

“So what is your story?”

“My story? I don’t really have a story. At least not one that’s worth telling. I’ve made a lot of mistakes but I’m trying to fix them now. My whole life I’ve been the bad guy and I’m tired of it.”

“You do not seem too bad to me.”

“Really? Well thanks. Now if only I could get God to see me the way you do.”

“You have more than you think.”

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

“The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.” – 1 Corinthians 15:42-44

The dim sunlight peeking through the windows blinded Clive, angry that he gave half the day to last night.

“I hate hangovers.”

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt tears. A long time since the taste of salt has been so much as to force me to try and cover it up with liquid preoccupation. A long time since I’ve felt the never ending droll of pain caressing the inside of my temporal lobe.

Why did it happen? I’m not supposed to have weaknesses. I’m a fucking demon.

Not anymore.


Don’t you get it? When God sent himself to earth he gave up his divinity. That was the whole point.

What does that even mean?

Wow. Look who the clueless one is now… It means that when you left hell and were born into me you left behind your divinity. Your power, your apathy… it’s all gone. You can now have desire, fear, remorse…

What could I possibly desire?

I think that’s something only you can figure out big guy.

This doesn’t make sense. Go away Clive. I need to think.


I walk back to the asylum. That’s where this whole thing started yesterday.


Still there in big, bold, blue letters. Redemption. What could that mean?

Moving in closer I saw something painted much smaller underneath it:

How you have fallen from heaven,
    morning star, son of the dawn!
You have been cast down to the earth,
    you who once laid low the nations!
 You said in your heart,
    “I will ascend to the heavens;
I will raise my throne
    above the stars of God;
I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly,
    on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon.
 I will ascend above the tops of the clouds;
    I will make myself like the Most High.”
But you are brought down to the realm of the dead,
    to the depths of the pit.” – Isaiah 14:12-15

Staring, I feel as though those words envelop me. I understand now. This feeling has been guilt. Guilt has riddled me since I was born out of that coma. But how do I stop it? How do I gain redemption?

Confession, Repentance, and Death. 


            You’ve experienced the divinity of God. Your pride caused you to feel inadequate and declare war on God. Then you fell. People say that God doesn’t pick favorite but he does. Lucifer was his favorite. It’s been a long time since you’ve heard that name hasn’t it? Then God declared His Son Christ as being equal to God Himself. Lucifer became envious and Lucifer’s envy of Christ caused him to act irrationally. But God was not all forgiving back then was he?
            When he fell, Lucifer became spiteful towards God. He began travelling the Earth, searching for wrong-doers and tempting the children of God. Years passed by and Lucifer began to change. He forgot his own name and bored the name given to him by the Jews. “Satan” or “Adversary.” He engulfed himself in flame and began taking and punishing any of God’s children he could tempt to stray. He became totally disconnected with God and yet in this dissonance, he became one with God.
Now you have come here to Earth once again. And in this place you have found a new calling. A new plan for yourself.

But I was supposed to end this world. Not be changed by it.

You came here to ask for forgiveness. And it is not unobtainable. God is no longer as unforgiving as he used to be.

Who are you? You don’t sound like Clive. Where’s Clive?

Clive is safe. He is with his family. Don’t worry about him. He is happy.

Wait… Does that mean you’re…?


I wake up to the sunlight streaming in through my window. Was I just visited by… No… Why would He? Clive?

No response. Well I guess I have to find redemption now. But how? What was it He said? Confession… Repentance… and… Death. Death. That’s it. I need to die. I need her.

Time passes as I sit and wait for her. The radio tells me it’s been a busy day so I know she’ll be blaming me.

The air felt electric. I knew she was coming.

“Welcome Catherine,” I say right after she rudely busts my door down. That was some nice mahogany. “I’ve been anticipating this moment for some time now.” I wait a few minutes for an apology and some compensation for my very expensive and exotic door. It never comes. That bitch. “I am here. In the Kitchen. Come and join me at the table.” I love talking like Yoda whenever she’s a round. Especially because I know she doesn’t get the reference. “This is where Judas sat. Arguably my biggest success, he was. Here he sat and schemed up the death of Christ.” Total bullshit. I never said a word to Judas. That man was fucked up all on his own. “Come. Sit and eat with me. Join me in the flesh and blood of Christ.” I pull out a huge tray of strawberry waffles and place it on the table.

The bitch didn’t even move. “Stupid bitch, I’m offering you a way out!”

“I’m Death! There is no way out of Death! Death is inescapable!”

I could feel my heart pounding. I guess this is what fear feels like. Despite my desire to die my human body still gave in to its natural Fight of Flight reflexes.

“THEN TRY IT BITCH!” I can feel her wrath rising. If there’s one thing I know how to do it’s manipulate people. “DO WHAT YOU CAME TO DO! You think yourself free from your own Plan? Haha! You idiot.”

That did it. It pushed her over the edge. She threw the table across the room. “Shit sugarlips! Don’t take it out on the mahogany!” She didn’t even say thank you for the waffles.

I could feel my blood pressure start to rise as she pulled a knife from I-don’t-even-wanna-know-where and charged at me. I felt an erection start to form in anticipation for my final breath. I closed my eyes. Braced for impact. For one glorious moment, I could taste victory.

But the knife never came. Then I came. I guess the irony of the whole situation was just to much for my penis to handle.

 I began to laugh. Partially because of the irony, partially because of my unexpected ejaculation. Whatever the reason, I started to bellow.

“You see Catherine? The Plan transcends any of us, and  most of all you. You are bound to your own works.” Unfortunately, my brilliance was shining through again.

Then, in order to keep up my façade, to not show weakness, I wrapped my hands around her neck and pressed her face against the window.

“Look at the stars Catherine.” Then more to myself than her I said; “A testimony to God’s far reaching touch.” Then pretty much exclusively to myself; “God doesn’t want you. God doesn’t love you. One day you will see the real truth.”

I feel the tears start to well up. In a last ditch effort to hold onto my dignity I say; “You wanted to dance, Catherine. You wanted to play. Well here I am. Come back when you’re figured stuff out bitch.” And I threw her out my window.

Dammit. That was a nice window too. 

Sunday, February 22, 2015

“Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he has redeemed from trouble” – Psalm 107:2

“Forgive me father for I have sinned.”

“This is a bar sweetheart, not a church.”

“What’s really the difference? Both allow people to intoxicate themselves with the idea that they can be forgiven of any transgression without the need of redemption.”

“Alright I think you’ve had enough.”

“RICK I SWEAR TO…” The salty taste soaked into my tongue before I registered the unholy water flowing from my eyes

“Hey man, okay, calm down no need to tear up”

Really? You’re crying? Dude that’s like, the third time today.


Sorry sweetums, you wanna talk about it?

Blue. Why blue? It could’ve been yellow.  Or Magenta. Or Smaragdine. But no, it had to be blue. I hate blue.

I understand that. All those years ago blue was the color the my wife wore, the color of my little daughters eyes, the color of that goddamned Subaru that ended their lives and changed mine forever.

Blue. The color of the sky. Of heaven. The color of God. I thought I was done with that fucking color when I became his adversary. When I ceased to be his favorite. Apparently not. Yahweh, the almighty asshole.


Whenever people think of hell they picture Adolf Hitler or Joseph Stalin as receiving the worst types of punishment God has to offer. That’s not true; the lowest layer of hell is reserved for one man. Levi Hutchins, the inventor of the alarm clock.

Rolling over to turn off the infernal and saw the time 6:66am. Yeah yeah, I know that’s 7:06 and it’s a bit cliché but what’s the point of having your own number if you can’t have a little fun with it?

Stepping outside I could tell it was gonna be a good day.

The blue flashes of police sirens drove past. All four this slum has. This oughta be interesting.

Using my Nancy Drew-like skills I managed to tail the 12 down to the asylum on Herbert Johnson Rd. and there I saw his body.

I had never met this man before. Never seen him before. That’s impossible. I saw all sin. Everything. But this man… He was new to me. Even without the blue paint… His soul was new to me. It was clean. Free from sin. I began to cry. For the first time in 6000 years I cried.

For an hour I laid there, weeping for the first and only man I had ever seen that didn’t deserve to die, dead.

When I awoke on the ground, my face still wet with salt water, the scene was clear. They took this man away without even knowing who it was they were truly carrying, an angel. I stood up. Something caught my eye. On the other side of the asylum some man had spray painted a single word across the wall.


Fuck. Not again. Tears began to roll trickle down my face.

“GO AWAY!!!” He began to beat against the word, trying to erase it while the paint still dried. He tried to destroy the evidence of his weakness, his deepest desire, before it became permanent.


At this point he couldn’t see anything between the tears and paint that he began smearing all of his face and hands.



I looked up to see the woman who lives down the hall, Alice Franklin.

Clive are you okay?”
“Yeah, yeah I’m fine. It’s just the suicide and everything. I just freaked out a little bit.”

“Okay. Do you need any help getting home?”


“I was just ask…”


To prove myself, I stood up and walked away, leaving the woman standing there stunned.

I stumbled through the streets until I finally found myself behind O’Harley’s. After taking a breath the events of today began to rush into my head. In an effort to keep myself from crying again, I began to laugh. Hysterically laugh. I laughed until a little girl strolled up to me.

DID YOU DO THIS???” Alright fuck this. I’m getting real tired of the crazy-ass women blaming me for things I didn’t do. “Do you think this is funny, people dying, other’s pain?”

Funny? Do I think it’s funny? Does this girl think I asked for this? Any of this? Does she think I want to do God’s dirty work? I want nothing more than to… No. She can’t know anything about that. How could she? She’s probably just as scared and confused as I am.

“I’m sorry”

I need a drink. I got up and walked into the bar.

Forgive me father for I have sinned.”

Saturday, January 31, 2015

"If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out." - Mark 9:43

Heart racing, I inspected the little cone of sweet, harvested seduction to ensure there were no blemishes. After all, even Jesus was allowed to have a last supper. Cole Harrison sat there; unaware that he would be the first to bring about a new age. He would be the first to be seen before the court of the Father. A court that only had one ruling: guilty.

“Thank you,” he said in his soft Irish twang.

“What would you consider your biggest sin?” he looked at me as though I had given him a plate of tiny human hearts instead of the delectable waffles that sat there staring back at him.

“That’s a bit personal to be asking a man you just met isn’t it?”

“I’d say it is envy.” I sat down next to him. Knife in hand. In that moment, my only desire was to finally touch my hands to that red river held inside every man and woman. To finally wash my hands of this liquid lust and replace it with the blood of the lamb.

The man stared at me. Perplexed.

“You want your nephew don’t you? But you can’t have him?”

Cole stood there. Petrified.

“How did you… I mean. I never told you…”

“You’re jealousy has pushed you away from him they call God. You would do well to repent.”

Clive you idiot.

“I should really go check on my apartment.”

As Cole moved towards the door, Clive sat. He easily could’ve caught the Irishman and ended his life, but he didn’t. Instead, Clive Buccatti began to cry.


 I could barely see through the tears streaming down my face. It’s not a good combination: running and crying. I didn’t know where I was running to or what I was crying for but instead of questioning it I just cried.

Blindly, I ran across town. Past the Sunny-Side Up Diner, the home of gluttony, past the Church of Faith, the resting place for sinners and their false idols, past the YMCA, home of pride and envy. Finally I stopped. In front of the Pit. I stood on the edge. Looking down, I saw blackness. I wished, for that moment, that I could live the life of Absalom. To be cast into the pit. To be buried under those stones. To die. I closed my eyes and prepared myself to fall.

Stop. Just stop.


I’m telling you to stop. Suicide is so boring.

Who are you? What do you want? Why do you keep speaking to me? Whispering to me?

Are you really that dense? You haven’t figured it out yet?


I am he. I am the Angel of the bottomless pit. Accuser of the brethren. I am he they call Beelzebub. The Serpent of Old. The Great tempter. I am the Morning Star. Lucifer. I am the Devil. And you are all these things as well.

I… I don’t understand.

Good lord… YOU’RE THE FUCKING DEVIL INCARNATE. Good god almighty do I need to spell it out for you?

You’re lying. You’re just a voice. A voice in my head.


I can shut you out.

You don’t seem to get it. I am not in your thoughts. You are in mine. You only believe you have free will because I allow it. But I could take it away just as easily.

You’re lying.

Don’t you find it strange how long it’s been since you’ve thought about your family? I mean I thought you loved that bitch wife of yours and your shitty little three-year old.

Fuck you. Shut the fuck up.

 I control everything you think, do, and say. We are the same. Just as I am the devil, so too are you.

Fuck you. You ca… Artichoke. Antidisestablishmentarianism. Michael Cera’s unbelievably sexy pencil mustache.

Now do you get it?


“Hey. Are you alright?” I looked up at the boy’s concerned face and knew that my argument hadn’t been contained to my thoughts.

“Oh” Clive stammered. “Sorry. I was just…”

“Hey. It’s alright. No need to explain. I just wanted to make sure that you were alright.”

I stared at the boys yellow hair. I could see it in his eyes that he was totally gay.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that. 


I’d forgotten about her.

“Hello Clive. Hello… Lucifer. I see you decided to stop playing nice.”

“Hey babe, take it ea…”

The bitch pushed me against a wall. ME.

“First off, I am not your babe. No one talks to me like that. Secondly, the minute you start taking lives, the minute you begin to interfere with The Plan, I will speed up Clive’s chapter. I will take him from you so quickly,”

“God you’re sexy when you’re angry.”

“Did you not hear me? I will kill your body.”

“Do you honestly think that’ll stop me? Empty threats? C’mon Catherine you can do better than that. Or would you rather me call you Mrityu? Śmierć? Malach HaMavet? Dea…”

“Do not… Say… It… We are done here. You have been warned. You’ve already interrupted The Plan once. Don’t do it again.”

She was gone before I could even make a comeback. It was gonna be a good one too. That bitch. But what did she mean about interrupting The Plan? I mean, don’t get me wrong I fully intend take her plan and shove it right up her ass but… I haven’t done anything yet. Looks like she made a mistake. About damn time. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

"But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars--their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur." - Revelations 21:8 (Apartment 43)

Clive Buccatti got up. Clive Buccatti plodded outside. Clive Buccatti decided to start each sentence with “Clive Buccatti” pretty much just to piss off anyone who would want Clive Buccatti to do otherwise. Damn did you see that? Not even using pronouns anymore. Just “Clive Buccatti”. Clive Buccatti wrote…

As the sun shined into the 43rd apartment of Dreamwood Terrace, my eyelids retreated back into my into my skull leaving my freshly dilated pupils to fend for themselves against the harsh light intensified by the reflecting off of the snow that reminded me all too much of my inner…

Man this guy’s pretentious. Skip to something interesting please.

So I decided to go outside. The snow came up to about my waist. Fuck the snow. The monotonous weather event just furthered my hatred for this mundane slum we call a town. I took my first step into the…

Holy shit could you go any slower??? I mean we get it you’re depressed. Literally no one cares. Man depression is so boring. That’s it I’m taking over. Sit back Clive. You can tell the story when it’s your turn.

Alright where were we? Oh yeah. So Clive was walking through the snow and wondering how to further describe how the snow reminded him of how much of a little bitch he was when he noticed a congregation of people inside that shitty diner next to his apartment complex. Now because Clive was such a deadbeat he wasn’t really accustomed to being around people. So he kept moving. He walked over to that little cupcake shop to see if the women he had met that one time was working there. She was. Now Clive was so socially awkward that he found it difficult to talk to his inner demons (no matter how badass they may appear) let alone some hot babe. So he decided to just look at her and continue to wonder where he knew her from. Yes he still had not realized it was *SPOILER ALERT* the girl from that dream he had earlier in that same blog post.

After not realizing the second most obvious plot twist in human history (Next to the resurrection of Christ. I mean seriously? That’s not exactly M. Night Shamalan level stuff) Clive decided to go back to his sad excuse for an apartment. Alright, I guess I’ll let him tell the rest.

The man sat on the floor outside of his apartment with his head between his legs.

“Hello?” I asked. The man looked up at me with a look that I couldn’t quite place as disdainful or bored.

“Hey,” he said in broken Irish accent. I could almost taste the sin dripping off of this man like sweat. Envy. Cowardess.


"What's your name?"

"Cole. Cole Harrison."

“Why’re you sitting out here?”

“My place is being searched.”

“Oh,” I said as the first smile I had had in years started to creep across my face, “Well my place is just around the corner there. Wanna come in for some strawberry waffles?”

Sunday, January 11, 2015

"And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light." - 2 Corinthians 11:14

"What makes Satan so evil?" Clive asked the girl as he was cleaning off the knife he had just used to cut up strawberries for their waffles. "What?" she responded. Clive thought she was truly beautiful. It was such a shame he was going to have to kill her. "Well," Clive responded, "In the bible. What makes God so good and Satan so bad? After all Satan only ever killed ten people whereas God killed millions." The girl stared at Clive like he crazy. They usually did. "Um," the girl said, "I mean isn't the reason he's so bad that he tempts people? Like with Eve in that garden?" Clive picked up their waffles and brought them over to the girl on his couch. "So what you're saying is that when I tempt you by offering you this waffle," Clive could feel the knife pulsating in his back pocket. It wanted to take this ignorant girl's life, "That I am essentially the devil himself?" The girl took a bite of her waffle. "Well no but..." "AND!" Clive exclaimed, "Does you accepting this waffle then make you a sinner because you gave into temptation?" The girl was speechless. This is to be expected since the guy was... What's the politically correct term for "Fucking Insane"? I can never remember these things... "Well then" said Clive as he gripped the knife in his back pocket, "as a sinner I suppose it's time for you to be judged by my God and Father." Then Clive pulled out the knife and...

After waking up from that dream I knew it was going to be one of those days. I’d had invasive dreams like that before (hell I have them while I’m awake) but that one felt… different somehow. It’s that I felt scared or concerned by this… I don’t know. It was something. I could tell just through the crack in my curtain that the sun was feeling particularly ignescent today. I wouldn’t have gone outside if it weren’t my appointment. Unfortunately I had to go to see Dr. Clemont. Isn’t there some rule about quacks being therapists? Cause Dr. Clemont isn’t exactly all there (sorry if you’re reading this Doc but you told me to be truthful).

Unfortunately Dr. Clemont’s office was in downtown, not in Dreamwood where I lived. This wouldn’t have been a problem except it involved getting on the subway. I hated being on the subway. Being underground always made me feel uneasy and yet… strangely at home.  

Evil. Sinner. Blasphemous. How is it that the same words can be so beautiful and so terrible at the same time? Why is it that humanity, after everything, hasn’t been able to define the most archaic of ideas? Good vs Evil. Light vs Dark. Comedy vs Tragedy. Moral vs Immoral. Maybe if we were different it would be more complicated but to me, with humanity, it seems so much simpler. There is just Evil. There is just Darkness. Just Tragedy. Just Immoral. Every decision anyone makes is selfish. People only help others so they can feel good about themselves.

These were thoughts running through my head in the waiting room of Dr. Clemont’s when she walked up. By the look on her face I guess I must have been thinking out loud again. I have to remember to stop doing that while in a shrink’s office. So while I’m thinking this girl walks up. Usually I just don’t humor people who try to talk to me but there was something different about this one. She was so beautiful she almost made me forget about Elizabeth. She also seemed familiar to me. Like I’d seen her before. In any case, she talked to me for a good long while about nothing in particular before I finally got bored with her. She said she owned some cupcake place and asked if I’d visit. Anything to shut you up. So I said sure.

After my extremely uneventful therapy session where I didn’t discover anything about myself or my little friend in my head I went home. When night rolled around I decided to take a walk like Clemont had told me to. I couldn’t stop thinking about my dream and what made it feel different. I was walking past the old asylum on Herschel Johnson Rd. when a meteor shower began overhead. Uncontrollably, I dropped to the ground and was overcome by an unprecedented display of ecstasy. It was in that moment that I figured out what was so unnerving about my devastatingly inhuman dream. It wasn’t that it made me feel scared or concerned. It was that it didn’t.  

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

"It opened its mouth to blaspheme God, and to slander his name and those who live in heaven." -Revelations 13:7

It started with a second. All of a sudden I was immersed in total darkness. That second stretched into minutes, days, weeks, years. I spent an eternity in utter blackness. I saw everything. Everything that has been. Everything that will be. All the lies. All the truths. Everything. For an eternity I lived and relived. Went in and out.

It all started with a car crash. The drunk driver came out of nowhere and hit my car. In that moment I lost everything. I lost my wife, my seven year old son, my eleven month old daughter in the back seat, my sanity. After that I lost ten years of my life to my comma.

The doctors said that I was lucky to have woken up and that I had to be careful because I could slip back into my comma pretty easily. So you can imagine that when the power went out that night I thought the worst. For that split second I was terrified and yet, strangely relieved. For years I’d considered the possibility of suicide. Just to see my family again. That’s probably why my shrink made me start writing this blog… But how can I help it?

She was the only one who understood me. The only one that didn’t mind my… abnormalities. Even when I had an episode, she was there with me all the way through it. Back then my episodes didn’t come nearly as often as they do anymore. Life was so much simpler. I heard them every once in a while but now they exist with me. They are now a part of me. The voices don’t leave. They’re a constant.

Constantly whispering. Sometimes screaming. When I’m alone in my apartment I can hear them. When I’m walking down Main Street I hear him. Even in the midst of a crowded room I hear him above them all. Constantly, ever whispering “This is the deceiver and the antichrist.”