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Re: [Strange Paradise] Re: Strange Paradise Fan Fiction

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  • Deborah Desmond
    Very, very good! You must be a writer. I liked all of it, until the very end. I would not like that ending for Jean Paul. No hope at all! All is lost!
    Message 1 of 4 , Sep 10, 2005
    • 0 Attachment
      Very, very good! You must be a writer. I liked all of it, until the very end. I would not like that ending for Jean Paul. No hope at all! All is lost! Forever to always come back to the same place, no escape at all! He would probably commit suicide. That would definitely be the end of the story. There would be no reason to go on, either for Jean Paul, or the person reading it, or future stories.
      There should always be a glimmer of hope. Something for Jean Paul to strive for. At least, that's the way I feel about it.
      Your writing is very good. Just didn't like the ending.
      Deborah
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: strangeparadiselibrary
      To: strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Saturday, September 10, 2005 12:20 PM
      Subject: [Strange Paradise] Re: Strange Paradise Fan Fiction


      Hello folks! I don't usually write fanfic, but Mike's post here
      started me thinking, and I got this vignette stuck in my head. It's
      just a short little piece that takes place directly after the end of
      the television series, and I'm posting it here in hopes of getting
      some feedback on how to revise it into an even stronger story. I hope
      you all enjoy it, but please let me know what you think, regardless of
      your reaction. Thanks! P.S. If you haven't watched the series all
      the way to the end yet, there are some minor spoilers here.

      PARADISE REGAINED
      a STRANGE PARADISE vignette by Curt Ladnier

      For the first time in an eternity, Jean Paul Desmond was a
      happy man. Safely ensconced in a comfortable bed with Emily, weaving
      languidly between consciousness and sleep after the first day of their
      life together as man and wife, Jean Paul was truly content. His vast
      riches had never brought him that, nor had his much envied
      aristocratic heritage. His noble birthright had spawned a waking
      nightmare, corrupting his first love, transforming her from a goddess
      to an abomination. His Mark of Death pronounced sentence on all those
      around him. But that was all over now, Jean Paul mused as he drew
      closer to the sleeping form of his new bride.
      Emily was everything that Erica wasn't. Where Erica was
      flamboyant and vivacious, Emily was bookish and subdued. Erica loved
      a life of parties, status and constant public attention. Emily wanted
      nothing more than to settle down quietly with her husband, to begin
      their new life together. And that suited Jean Paul perfectly. After
      their honeymoon, he would make arrangements for his subordinates to
      attend to the various family businesses, while he and Emily made their
      own home and tended to the business of making a family. The only
      curse he had to fear now was that of growing old and fat with the
      passing years. Jean Paul smiled beatifically in his half-sleep at the
      thought.
      The smell of smoke was his first clue that something was
      wrong. His eyes snapped open, adrenaline instantly awakening him at
      the thought of a fire. Blinking several times, he looked 'round the
      room for the source of the disturbing scent, but saw no evidence of
      smoke or flames. His concern had no chance to subside however, as a
      new shock gripped Jean Paul's soul. He saw that he was not in his
      honeymoon suite at all. He was gazing over the ruins of his once-
      luxurious bedroom on Maljardin!
      For some moments he sat, awestruck, in the smoke damaged
      wreckage that had once been his bed. It wasn't possible! A year
      earlier, Jean Paul set his own centuries-old home ablaze in order to
      rid himself of the murderous thing which was masquerading as his
      beloved Erica, and to purge the spirit of his evil ancestor, Jacques
      Eloi des Mondes, who seemed to have permeated every nook and cranny of
      the great chateau. That had been last year, and a lifetime ago. He
      hadn't as much as seen Maljardin since that day. How could he
      suddenly be looking over the still-smoldering aftermath of that tragic
      night?
      "Emily!" he cried abruptly, rousing himself from his stupor of
      confusion. "What ..." But a shock even more profound than he had yet
      experienced caused him to cut his question in mid utterance, and
      struggle only half successfully to stifle back a scream. Drawing
      aside the bedclothes in search of comfort in this moment of disturbing
      unreality, Jean Paul did not find the sleeping form of the woman who
      had so lovingly exchanged vows with him before God and witnesses less
      than twenty-four hours earlier. Rather, in bed at his side lay the
      badly charred and blackened corpse of a woman!
      She had probably been beautiful once - before the flames had
      ravaged her soft, defenseless body. Now she was nothing but a mass of
      red blisters, and blackened flesh, partially covered by the remains of
      an evening dress, the tatters of which had fused to her form in
      places. The smell, mingling with the scents of the ashes and burnt
      wood, was indescribable.
      Unabashed terror lifted jean Paul with a wild urge to fling
      himself blindly from the bed. In his haste to flee, he became
      entangled in the remnants of the ruined silk sheets and landed in a
      heap only a few feet away. Dazed, he sat there for a long time. The
      situation was incredible, utterly insane. And yet, here he was.
      Slowly, bit by bit, his traumatized brain began to allow him to
      process his impossible surroundings. The fear was still there, but
      Jean Paul managed to repress the panic. Losing control would
      certainly do him no good, and whether the estate was in ashes or not,
      he was still the master of Maljardin.
      A sudden impulse caused him to rise and return to the
      grotesque carcass on the bed, something he was almost certain he had
      glimpsed at the moment of his panic. Yes, even a cursory glance
      confirmed it. There, resting delicately around the dead woman's
      throat - actually seared into the flesh - was a locket. Erica's
      locket, which he had given her during happier days. A single tear
      crept down Jean Paul's cheek, despair battling with revulsion within
      his brain, as he realized that he had been lying next to the immolated
      remains of his dead first wife.
      Turning abruptly, he strode for the door. He had to leave
      this room before he lost his reason completely. The rest of the
      chateau was in the same state as the bedroom, ravaged by the inferno
      through which Jean Paul had meant to cleanse his home, to cleanse his
      soul. The main staircase was in dangerous condition, but navigable
      with extreme caution. Some little effort brought Jean Paul to the
      center of the great hall, barely recognizable now as the site where
      the blaze had started.
      He stood amid the ashes and smoldering remnants of familiar
      furniture, almost unable to take it all in. This room held ghosts for
      Jean Paul; so many people who had walked and talked here with him were
      now dead. Dead because, in the depths of grief, he had defied God.
      Alison, Dan, Vangie, and all the others - he had opened the deadly
      Pandora's Box which took their lives. Now his guests - his friends -
      whose single fervent wish had been to leave the island were permanent
      inhabitants of Maljardin.
      Had it really been only a year since the conflagration - since
      Jean Paul had lost consciousness on the steps before the chateau, to
      awaken days later and thousands of miles away? He had lived a
      lifetime since that night, returning to the home of his youth, making
      long-overdue connections with family members he had not seen in years
      and, of course, meeting Emily. Facing horrors, too. Jean Paul
      shuddered slightly at their recollection. The destruction of
      Maljardin had not purged the taint from his family's blood. Still, he
      had faced those demons too, and triumphed. How, then, was he here?
      And why?
      "Desmondton. Philip. The Mark of Death. Helena. The Key of
      Life. Emily." he mused vacantly. "Can it all have been some wildly
      vivid dream?"
      Scarcely had the words escaped his lips when a peal of
      raucous, mocking laughter assaulted Jean Paul's ears.
      "A dream? Oh, no, Jean Paul Desmond!" a sickeningly familiar
      voice thundered all around him, seemingly from everywhere at
      once. "And yet, these events do not exist."
      "You!" the exclamation escaped Jean Paul in a tight
      involuntary hiss which caused him momentary pain. Whirling to face
      the wall leading to the foyer, he beheld a sight which his reason told
      him couldn't possibly exist. There, untouched by smoke or flame,
      unscathed by any devastation, hung a wood-framed canvas. Its subject,
      executed in dark heavy oils, was a handsome if sinister man in
      cavalier dress whose appearance was strikingly similar to Jean Paul
      himself. The portrait of Jacques Eloi des Mondes! The contemptuous
      laughter continued to echo throughout the house.
      "I burned you," Jean Paul gasped dumbly. "I set the fire of
      the torch to your frame and watched it consume your damnable visage!"
      "Fire? Destroy me?" the disembodied voice would have sounded
      playful were it not for the sinister edge which sliced through each
      syllable. "The master whom I serve has a palace filled with the
      stuff. It will take more than flame to rid you of little old me."
      "You devil!" Jean Paul spat. "Why have you returned to torment
      me? The Desmond curse is lifted. You have no reason to plague us
      now."
      "Poor Jean Paul. You're confused," his ancestor
      laughed. "First you think you've been dreaming, and now you think
      you're a free man. Whatever shall we do with you?"
      "I've had enough of your mockeries to last me a lifetime,"
      returned Jean Paul, crossing the room, closer to the portrait. "Why
      have you brought me here? Where is Emily?"
      "Emily ... Erica ... Erica ... Emily ... Why are you always
      imploring me regarding the women in your life?" sneered Jacques. "Not
      that I would mind having either one of them in my bedchamber. Or
      both."
      "Enough!" Jean Paul shrieked at the spirit whom he thought he
      had banished forever. "Why am I here?"
      "We've brought you back where you belong," Jacques stated
      simply, "and I even placed you back into bed with your darling Erica.
      Isn't that what you begged me for all those months?"
      "Monster!" Jean Paul retorted. "How could I have ever been so
      deluded as to desire help from you, even when I was blinded by grief?"
      Jacques' only answer was another rolling laugh, but the pause
      gave Jean Paul a moment to regain a fraction of his composure.
      "Besides," he told the portrait dispassionately, "it doesn't
      matter why you've brought me here. Your prank is no more than an
      inconvenience. The Desmond curse is broken, and you no longer have
      any hold over me. I'll leave this island, return to my wife, and
      never think of this wretched place again."
      Jacques' laughter deepened, grew even more intense.
      "You still don't understand, do you, dear kinsman?" the spirit
      chided. "There is nothing to return to."
      "What mendacity are you spouting now?" Jean Paul demanded.
      "It's true," Jacques' voice assured him, assuming a tone of
      mock injury. "A few moments ago you asked me about your precious
      Emily. I should say that right about now she is determinedly
      journeying toward Desmondton, a letter from Philip Desmond inviting
      her to make full use of his family's library tucked safely in her
      handbag."
      "Has insanity final taken complete hold of you?" Jean Paul
      asked his ancestor, bewildered. "You're speaking of things that
      happened last year, after my arrival at Desmond Hall."
      "Now, Now, Jean Paul. What is time?" the spirit asked
      enigmatically. "In my current state, having spent hundreds of years
      imprisoned by an effigy, time means little to me. And to a man such
      as you, who is eternally touched with the Mark of Death, it means
      NOTHING AT ALL."
      "Enough of your riddles! Explain yourself."
      "The matter is simply this, my foolish fellow: for better or
      for worse, we are both Desmonds, and both men who have pledged
      ourselves to a darker power. For the master to whom we are both
      bound, time is meaningless, a child's plaything to be manipulated - or
      discarded - at his whim."
      "But the curse is ended!" Jean Paul insisted. "We laid it to
      rest in Desmond Hall. I would never have married Emily, otherwise."
      "Which is exactly why you are here now," Jacques
      concluded. "Dear fellow, you took and oath. Pledged a bond. The One
      we serve will not release you form that, despite your foolish notions
      to the contrary. Yes, you and your friends at our ancestral home did
      manage to break the curse, to eradicate the Mark. You found your
      happiness with your woman, and that is why He has brought you back
      here, wiped your slate clean."
      "What ..." was all that Jean Paul could manage.
      "You will never be free," Jacques repeated simply. "Certainly,
      you can leave this island. Go to Desmondton again if you wish.
      Perhaps events will play themselves out in the same fashion again, or
      perhaps not, but one thing is certain. Should you ever manage to
      dispel the curse, to find peace, you will assuredly find yourself
      right back here to begin the cycle anew. Time and again."
      "No escape ..." Jean Paul heard a tiny voice which was his own
      pitifully mumble, as the horror of Jacques' words gave flight to his
      reason.
      "so you see, truly, wherever you choose to run, Jean Paul
      Desmond, whatever you do, your curse will follow you," Jacques Eloi
      des Mondes pronounced. "And Life will be, for you, always a strange
      paradise."

      --- In strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com, "mikeatwost"
      <mikeatwost@y...> wrote:
      > Has anyone here ever considered writing their own "Strange Paradise"
      > stories? I know it's been 35 years since the series ended, so if
      > anyone's interested, it probably wouldn't hurt to come up with a
      > timeline detailing any events post-July 22, 1970, such as Jean Paul
      and
      > Emily's marriage (they had yet to marry when the series ended), and
      the
      > other Desmonds today.
      >
      > I think this thread will get your creative juices flowing.




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      Horror movie poster Horror masks Emily strange


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    • Thomas Graham
      I think the story is great, except fot the ending also. There should be a way to fight the evil on Maljardin. Deborah Desmond wrote:
      Message 2 of 4 , Sep 10, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        I think the story is great, except fot the ending also. There should be a way to fight the
        evil on Maljardin.

        Deborah Desmond <ozbobz-cats@...> wrote:
        Very, very good! You must be a writer. I liked all of it, until the very end. I would not like that ending for Jean Paul. No hope at all! All is lost! Forever to always come back to the same place, no escape at all! He would probably commit suicide. That would definitely be the end of the story. There would be no reason to go on, either for Jean Paul, or the person reading it, or future stories.
        There should always be a glimmer of hope. Something for Jean Paul to strive for. At least, that's the way I feel about it.
        Your writing is very good. Just didn't like the ending.
        Deborah
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: strangeparadiselibrary
        To: strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Saturday, September 10, 2005 12:20 PM
        Subject: [Strange Paradise] Re: Strange Paradise Fan Fiction


        Hello folks! I don't usually write fanfic, but Mike's post here
        started me thinking, and I got this vignette stuck in my head. It's
        just a short little piece that takes place directly after the end of
        the television series, and I'm posting it here in hopes of getting
        some feedback on how to revise it into an even stronger story. I hope
        you all enjoy it, but please let me know what you think, regardless of
        your reaction. Thanks! P.S. If you haven't watched the series all
        the way to the end yet, there are some minor spoilers here.

        PARADISE REGAINED
        a STRANGE PARADISE vignette by Curt Ladnier

        For the first time in an eternity, Jean Paul Desmond was a
        happy man. Safely ensconced in a comfortable bed with Emily, weaving
        languidly between consciousness and sleep after the first day of their
        life together as man and wife, Jean Paul was truly content. His vast
        riches had never brought him that, nor had his much envied
        aristocratic heritage. His noble birthright had spawned a waking
        nightmare, corrupting his first love, transforming her from a goddess
        to an abomination. His Mark of Death pronounced sentence on all those
        around him. But that was all over now, Jean Paul mused as he drew
        closer to the sleeping form of his new bride.
        Emily was everything that Erica wasn't. Where Erica was
        flamboyant and vivacious, Emily was bookish and subdued. Erica loved
        a life of parties, status and constant public attention. Emily wanted
        nothing more than to settle down quietly with her husband, to begin
        their new life together. And that suited Jean Paul perfectly. After
        their honeymoon, he would make arrangements for his subordinates to
        attend to the various family businesses, while he and Emily made their
        own home and tended to the business of making a family. The only
        curse he had to fear now was that of growing old and fat with the
        passing years. Jean Paul smiled beatifically in his half-sleep at the
        thought.
        The smell of smoke was his first clue that something was
        wrong. His eyes snapped open, adrenaline instantly awakening him at
        the thought of a fire. Blinking several times, he looked 'round the
        room for the source of the disturbing scent, but saw no evidence of
        smoke or flames. His concern had no chance to subside however, as a
        new shock gripped Jean Paul's soul. He saw that he was not in his
        honeymoon suite at all. He was gazing over the ruins of his once-
        luxurious bedroom on Maljardin!
        For some moments he sat, awestruck, in the smoke damaged
        wreckage that had once been his bed. It wasn't possible! A year
        earlier, Jean Paul set his own centuries-old home ablaze in order to
        rid himself of the murderous thing which was masquerading as his
        beloved Erica, and to purge the spirit of his evil ancestor, Jacques
        Eloi des Mondes, who seemed to have permeated every nook and cranny of
        the great chateau. That had been last year, and a lifetime ago. He
        hadn't as much as seen Maljardin since that day. How could he
        suddenly be looking over the still-smoldering aftermath of that tragic
        night?
        "Emily!" he cried abruptly, rousing himself from his stupor of
        confusion. "What ..." But a shock even more profound than he had yet
        experienced caused him to cut his question in mid utterance, and
        struggle only half successfully to stifle back a scream. Drawing
        aside the bedclothes in search of comfort in this moment of disturbing
        unreality, Jean Paul did not find the sleeping form of the woman who
        had so lovingly exchanged vows with him before God and witnesses less
        than twenty-four hours earlier. Rather, in bed at his side lay the
        badly charred and blackened corpse of a woman!
        She had probably been beautiful once - before the flames had
        ravaged her soft, defenseless body. Now she was nothing but a mass of
        red blisters, and blackened flesh, partially covered by the remains of
        an evening dress, the tatters of which had fused to her form in
        places. The smell, mingling with the scents of the ashes and burnt
        wood, was indescribable.
        Unabashed terror lifted jean Paul with a wild urge to fling
        himself blindly from the bed. In his haste to flee, he became
        entangled in the remnants of the ruined silk sheets and landed in a
        heap only a few feet away. Dazed, he sat there for a long time. The
        situation was incredible, utterly insane. And yet, here he was.
        Slowly, bit by bit, his traumatized brain began to allow him to
        process his impossible surroundings. The fear was still there, but
        Jean Paul managed to repress the panic. Losing control would
        certainly do him no good, and whether the estate was in ashes or not,
        he was still the master of Maljardin.
        A sudden impulse caused him to rise and return to the
        grotesque carcass on the bed, something he was almost certain he had
        glimpsed at the moment of his panic. Yes, even a cursory glance
        confirmed it. There, resting delicately around the dead woman's
        throat - actually seared into the flesh - was a locket. Erica's
        locket, which he had given her during happier days. A single tear
        crept down Jean Paul's cheek, despair battling with revulsion within
        his brain, as he realized that he had been lying next to the immolated
        remains of his dead first wife.
        Turning abruptly, he strode for the door. He had to leave
        this room before he lost his reason completely. The rest of the
        chateau was in the same state as the bedroom, ravaged by the inferno
        through which Jean Paul had meant to cleanse his home, to cleanse his
        soul. The main staircase was in dangerous condition, but navigable
        with extreme caution. Some little effort brought Jean Paul to the
        center of the great hall, barely recognizable now as the site where
        the blaze had started.
        He stood amid the ashes and smoldering remnants of familiar
        furniture, almost unable to take it all in. This room held ghosts for
        Jean Paul; so many people who had walked and talked here with him were
        now dead. Dead because, in the depths of grief, he had defied God.
        Alison, Dan, Vangie, and all the others - he had opened the deadly
        Pandora's Box which took their lives. Now his guests - his friends -
        whose single fervent wish had been to leave the island were permanent
        inhabitants of Maljardin.
        Had it really been only a year since the conflagration - since
        Jean Paul had lost consciousness on the steps before the chateau, to
        awaken days later and thousands of miles away? He had lived a
        lifetime since that night, returning to the home of his youth, making
        long-overdue connections with family members he had not seen in years
        and, of course, meeting Emily. Facing horrors, too. Jean Paul
        shuddered slightly at their recollection. The destruction of
        Maljardin had not purged the taint from his family's blood. Still, he
        had faced those demons too, and triumphed. How, then, was he here?
        And why?
        "Desmondton. Philip. The Mark of Death. Helena. The Key of
        Life. Emily." he mused vacantly. "Can it all have been some wildly
        vivid dream?"
        Scarcely had the words escaped his lips when a peal of
        raucous, mocking laughter assaulted Jean Paul's ears.
        "A dream? Oh, no, Jean Paul Desmond!" a sickeningly familiar
        voice thundered all around him, seemingly from everywhere at
        once. "And yet, these events do not exist."
        "You!" the exclamation escaped Jean Paul in a tight
        involuntary hiss which caused him momentary pain. Whirling to face
        the wall leading to the foyer, he beheld a sight which his reason told
        him couldn't possibly exist. There, untouched by smoke or flame,
        unscathed by any devastation, hung a wood-framed canvas. Its subject,
        executed in dark heavy oils, was a handsome if sinister man in
        cavalier dress whose appearance was strikingly similar to Jean Paul
        himself. The portrait of Jacques Eloi des Mondes! The contemptuous
        laughter continued to echo throughout the house.
        "I burned you," Jean Paul gasped dumbly. "I set the fire of
        the torch to your frame and watched it consume your damnable visage!"
        "Fire? Destroy me?" the disembodied voice would have sounded
        playful were it not for the sinister edge which sliced through each
        syllable. "The master whom I serve has a palace filled with the
        stuff. It will take more than flame to rid you of little old me."
        "You devil!" Jean Paul spat. "Why have you returned to torment
        me? The Desmond curse is lifted. You have no reason to plague us
        now."
        "Poor Jean Paul. You're confused," his ancestor
        laughed. "First you think you've been dreaming, and now you think
        you're a free man. Whatever shall we do with you?"
        "I've had enough of your mockeries to last me a lifetime,"
        returned Jean Paul, crossing the room, closer to the portrait. "Why
        have you brought me here? Where is Emily?"
        "Emily ... Erica ... Erica ... Emily ... Why are you always
        imploring me regarding the women in your life?" sneered Jacques. "Not
        that I would mind having either one of them in my bedchamber. Or
        both."
        "Enough!" Jean Paul shrieked at the spirit whom he thought he
        had banished forever. "Why am I here?"
        "We've brought you back where you belong," Jacques stated
        simply, "and I even placed you back into bed with your darling Erica.
        Isn't that what you begged me for all those months?"
        "Monster!" Jean Paul retorted. "How could I have ever been so
        deluded as to desire help from you, even when I was blinded by grief?"
        Jacques' only answer was another rolling laugh, but the pause
        gave Jean Paul a moment to regain a fraction of his composure.
        "Besides," he told the portrait dispassionately, "it doesn't
        matter why you've brought me here. Your prank is no more than an
        inconvenience. The Desmond curse is broken, and you no longer have
        any hold over me. I'll leave this island, return to my wife, and
        never think of this wretched place again."
        Jacques' laughter deepened, grew even more intense.
        "You still don't understand, do you, dear kinsman?" the spirit
        chided. "There is nothing to return to."
        "What mendacity are you spouting now?" Jean Paul demanded.
        "It's true," Jacques' voice assured him, assuming a tone of
        mock injury. "A few moments ago you asked me about your precious
        Emily. I should say that right about now she is determinedly
        journeying toward Desmondton, a letter from Philip Desmond inviting
        her to make full use of his family's library tucked safely in her
        handbag."
        "Has insanity final taken complete hold of you?" Jean Paul
        asked his ancestor, bewildered. "You're speaking of things that
        happened last year, after my arrival at Desmond Hall."
        "Now, Now, Jean Paul. What is time?" the spirit asked
        enigmatically. "In my current state, having spent hundreds of years
        imprisoned by an effigy, time means little to me. And to a man such
        as you, who is eternally touched with the Mark of Death, it means
        NOTHING AT ALL."
        "Enough of your riddles! Explain yourself."
        "The matter is simply this, my foolish fellow: for better or
        for worse, we are both Desmonds, and both men who have pledged
        ourselves to a darker power. For the master to whom we are both
        bound, time is meaningless, a child's plaything to be manipulated - or
        discarded - at his whim."
        "But the curse is ended!" Jean Paul insisted. "We laid it to
        rest in Desmond Hall. I would never have married Emily, otherwise."
        "Which is exactly why you are here now," Jacques
        concluded. "Dear fellow, you took and oath. Pledged a bond. The One
        we serve will not release you form that, despite your foolish notions
        to the contrary. Yes, you and your friends at our ancestral home did
        manage to break the curse, to eradicate the Mark. You found your
        happiness with your woman, and that is why He has brought you back
        here, wiped your slate clean."
        "What ..." was all that Jean Paul could manage.
        "You will never be free," Jacques repeated simply. "Certainly,
        you can leave this island. Go to Desmondton again if you wish.
        Perhaps events will play themselves out in the same fashion again, or
        perhaps not, but one thing is certain. Should you ever manage to
        dispel the curse, to find peace, you will assuredly find yourself
        right back here to begin the cycle anew. Time and again."
        "No escape ..." Jean Paul heard a tiny voice which was his own
        pitifully mumble, as the horror of Jacques' words gave flight to his
        reason.
        "so you see, truly, wherever you choose to run, Jean Paul
        Desmond, whatever you do, your curse will follow you," Jacques Eloi
        des Mondes pronounced. "And Life will be, for you, always a strange
        paradise."

        --- In strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com, "mikeatwost"
        <mikeatwost@y...> wrote:
        > Has anyone here ever considered writing their own "Strange Paradise"
        > stories? I know it's been 35 years since the series ended, so if
        > anyone's interested, it probably wouldn't hurt to come up with a
        > timeline detailing any events post-July 22, 1970, such as Jean Paul
        and
        > Emily's marriage (they had yet to marry when the series ended), and
        the
        > other Desmonds today.
        >
        > I think this thread will get your creative juices flowing.




        SPONSORED LINKS Horror dvd Paradise Horror book
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      • lunatictyme
        Thanks for the feedback, guys! I really do appreciate it, and anyone else who feels like commenting, please do. I knew when I conceived this idea that it
        Message 3 of 4 , Sep 10, 2005
        • 0 Attachment
          Thanks for the feedback, guys! I really do appreciate it, and anyone
          else who feels like commenting, please do. I knew when I conceived
          this idea that it wound up treating Jean Paul terribly. Still, the
          show was above all else a horror series, so I decided to run with
          it. I still may decide to re-write the ending to give, as some of
          you have put it, "a glimmer of hope" to our beloved character, but I
          haven't decided yet. My thought on the subject is this: no matter
          how bleak a situation is, even if it appears totally hopeless, a bit
          of imagination can find a way around it. I didn't really intend this
          to be the ending of a story, but a possible jumping off point for
          more stories. Not that I'm certain that I'll ever re-visit this
          particular piece of fiction again, but it's possible, and anyone else
          out there is welcome to pick things up here if you have your own
          vision. I've already conceived of at least one way that Jean Paul
          might get out of this predicament, but that's just my idea. What
          about you folks out there? Anyone else want to pick up the ball and
          run with it for awhile? Thanks again for taking the time to read my
          stuff and comment on it. I really appreciate it. - Curt

          --- In strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com, "Deborah Desmond" <ozbobz-
          cats@m...> wrote:
          > Very, very good! You must be a writer. I liked all of it, until
          the very end. I would not like that ending for Jean Paul. No hope
          at all! All is lost! Forever to always come back to the same place,
          no escape at all! He would probably commit suicide. That would
          definitely be the end of the story. There would be no reason to go
          on, either for Jean Paul, or the person reading it, or future
          stories.
          > There should always be a glimmer of hope. Something for Jean Paul
          to strive for. At least, that's the way I feel about it.
          > Your writing is very good. Just didn't like the ending.
          > Deborah
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: strangeparadiselibrary
          > To: strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com
          > Sent: Saturday, September 10, 2005 12:20 PM
          > Subject: [Strange Paradise] Re: Strange Paradise Fan Fiction
          >
          >
          > Hello folks! I don't usually write fanfic, but Mike's post here
          > started me thinking, and I got this vignette stuck in my head.
          It's
          > just a short little piece that takes place directly after the end
          of
          > the television series, and I'm posting it here in hopes of
          getting
          > some feedback on how to revise it into an even stronger story. I
          hope
          > you all enjoy it, but please let me know what you think,
          regardless of
          > your reaction. Thanks! P.S. If you haven't watched the series
          all
          > the way to the end yet, there are some minor spoilers here.
          >
          > PARADISE REGAINED
          > a STRANGE PARADISE vignette by Curt Ladnier
          >
          > For the first time in an eternity, Jean Paul Desmond was a
          > happy man. Safely ensconced in a comfortable bed with Emily,
          weaving
          > languidly between consciousness and sleep after the first day of
          their
          > life together as man and wife, Jean Paul was truly content. His
          vast
          > riches had never brought him that, nor had his much envied
          > aristocratic heritage. His noble birthright had spawned a waking
          > nightmare, corrupting his first love, transforming her from a
          goddess
          > to an abomination. His Mark of Death pronounced sentence on all
          those
          > around him. But that was all over now, Jean Paul mused as he
          drew
          > closer to the sleeping form of his new bride.
          > Emily was everything that Erica wasn't. Where Erica was
          > flamboyant and vivacious, Emily was bookish and subdued. Erica
          loved
          > a life of parties, status and constant public attention. Emily
          wanted
          > nothing more than to settle down quietly with her husband, to
          begin
          > their new life together. And that suited Jean Paul perfectly.
          After
          > their honeymoon, he would make arrangements for his subordinates
          to
          > attend to the various family businesses, while he and Emily made
          their
          > own home and tended to the business of making a family. The only
          > curse he had to fear now was that of growing old and fat with the
          > passing years. Jean Paul smiled beatifically in his half-sleep
          at the
          > thought.
          > The smell of smoke was his first clue that something was
          > wrong. His eyes snapped open, adrenaline instantly awakening him
          at
          > the thought of a fire. Blinking several times, he looked 'round
          the
          > room for the source of the disturbing scent, but saw no evidence
          of
          > smoke or flames. His concern had no chance to subside however,
          as a
          > new shock gripped Jean Paul's soul. He saw that he was not in
          his
          > honeymoon suite at all. He was gazing over the ruins of his once-
          > luxurious bedroom on Maljardin!
          > For some moments he sat, awestruck, in the smoke damaged
          > wreckage that had once been his bed. It wasn't possible! A year
          > earlier, Jean Paul set his own centuries-old home ablaze in order
          to
          > rid himself of the murderous thing which was masquerading as his
          > beloved Erica, and to purge the spirit of his evil ancestor,
          Jacques
          > Eloi des Mondes, who seemed to have permeated every nook and
          cranny of
          > the great chateau. That had been last year, and a lifetime ago.
          He
          > hadn't as much as seen Maljardin since that day. How could he
          > suddenly be looking over the still-smoldering aftermath of that
          tragic
          > night?
          > "Emily!" he cried abruptly, rousing himself from his stupor
          of
          > confusion. "What ..." But a shock even more profound than he had
          yet
          > experienced caused him to cut his question in mid utterance, and
          > struggle only half successfully to stifle back a scream. Drawing
          > aside the bedclothes in search of comfort in this moment of
          disturbing
          > unreality, Jean Paul did not find the sleeping form of the woman
          who
          > had so lovingly exchanged vows with him before God and witnesses
          less
          > than twenty-four hours earlier. Rather, in bed at his side lay
          the
          > badly charred and blackened corpse of a woman!
          > She had probably been beautiful once - before the flames
          had
          > ravaged her soft, defenseless body. Now she was nothing but a
          mass of
          > red blisters, and blackened flesh, partially covered by the
          remains of
          > an evening dress, the tatters of which had fused to her form in
          > places. The smell, mingling with the scents of the ashes and
          burnt
          > wood, was indescribable.
          > Unabashed terror lifted jean Paul with a wild urge to fling
          > himself blindly from the bed. In his haste to flee, he became
          > entangled in the remnants of the ruined silk sheets and landed in
          a
          > heap only a few feet away. Dazed, he sat there for a long time.
          The
          > situation was incredible, utterly insane. And yet, here he was.
          > Slowly, bit by bit, his traumatized brain began to allow him to
          > process his impossible surroundings. The fear was still there,
          but
          > Jean Paul managed to repress the panic. Losing control would
          > certainly do him no good, and whether the estate was in ashes or
          not,
          > he was still the master of Maljardin.
          > A sudden impulse caused him to rise and return to the
          > grotesque carcass on the bed, something he was almost certain he
          had
          > glimpsed at the moment of his panic. Yes, even a cursory glance
          > confirmed it. There, resting delicately around the dead woman's
          > throat - actually seared into the flesh - was a locket. Erica's
          > locket, which he had given her during happier days. A single
          tear
          > crept down Jean Paul's cheek, despair battling with revulsion
          within
          > his brain, as he realized that he had been lying next to the
          immolated
          > remains of his dead first wife.
          > Turning abruptly, he strode for the door. He had to leave
          > this room before he lost his reason completely. The rest of the
          > chateau was in the same state as the bedroom, ravaged by the
          inferno
          > through which Jean Paul had meant to cleanse his home, to cleanse
          his
          > soul. The main staircase was in dangerous condition, but
          navigable
          > with extreme caution. Some little effort brought Jean Paul to
          the
          > center of the great hall, barely recognizable now as the site
          where
          > the blaze had started.
          > He stood amid the ashes and smoldering remnants of familiar
          > furniture, almost unable to take it all in. This room held
          ghosts for
          > Jean Paul; so many people who had walked and talked here with him
          were
          > now dead. Dead because, in the depths of grief, he had defied
          God.
          > Alison, Dan, Vangie, and all the others - he had opened the
          deadly
          > Pandora's Box which took their lives. Now his guests - his
          friends -
          > whose single fervent wish had been to leave the island were
          permanent
          > inhabitants of Maljardin.
          > Had it really been only a year since the conflagration -
          since
          > Jean Paul had lost consciousness on the steps before the chateau,
          to
          > awaken days later and thousands of miles away? He had lived a
          > lifetime since that night, returning to the home of his youth,
          making
          > long-overdue connections with family members he had not seen in
          years
          > and, of course, meeting Emily. Facing horrors, too. Jean Paul
          > shuddered slightly at their recollection. The destruction of
          > Maljardin had not purged the taint from his family's blood.
          Still, he
          > had faced those demons too, and triumphed. How, then, was he
          here?
          > And why?
          > "Desmondton. Philip. The Mark of Death. Helena. The Key of
          > Life. Emily." he mused vacantly. "Can it all have been some
          wildly
          > vivid dream?"
          > Scarcely had the words escaped his lips when a peal of
          > raucous, mocking laughter assaulted Jean Paul's ears.
          > "A dream? Oh, no, Jean Paul Desmond!" a sickeningly
          familiar
          > voice thundered all around him, seemingly from everywhere at
          > once. "And yet, these events do not exist."
          > "You!" the exclamation escaped Jean Paul in a tight
          > involuntary hiss which caused him momentary pain. Whirling to
          face
          > the wall leading to the foyer, he beheld a sight which his reason
          told
          > him couldn't possibly exist. There, untouched by smoke or flame,
          > unscathed by any devastation, hung a wood-framed canvas. Its
          subject,
          > executed in dark heavy oils, was a handsome if sinister man in
          > cavalier dress whose appearance was strikingly similar to Jean
          Paul
          > himself. The portrait of Jacques Eloi des Mondes! The
          contemptuous
          > laughter continued to echo throughout the house.
          > "I burned you," Jean Paul gasped dumbly. "I set the fire of
          > the torch to your frame and watched it consume your damnable
          visage!"
          > "Fire? Destroy me?" the disembodied voice would have
          sounded
          > playful were it not for the sinister edge which sliced through
          each
          > syllable. "The master whom I serve has a palace filled with the
          > stuff. It will take more than flame to rid you of little old me."
          > "You devil!" Jean Paul spat. "Why have you returned to
          torment
          > me? The Desmond curse is lifted. You have no reason to plague
          us
          > now."
          > "Poor Jean Paul. You're confused," his ancestor
          > laughed. "First you think you've been dreaming, and now you think
          > you're a free man. Whatever shall we do with you?"
          > "I've had enough of your mockeries to last me a lifetime,"
          > returned Jean Paul, crossing the room, closer to the
          portrait. "Why
          > have you brought me here? Where is Emily?"
          > "Emily ... Erica ... Erica ... Emily ... Why are you always
          > imploring me regarding the women in your life?" sneered
          Jacques. "Not
          > that I would mind having either one of them in my bedchamber. Or
          > both."
          > "Enough!" Jean Paul shrieked at the spirit whom he thought
          he
          > had banished forever. "Why am I here?"
          > "We've brought you back where you belong," Jacques stated
          > simply, "and I even placed you back into bed with your darling
          Erica.
          > Isn't that what you begged me for all those months?"
          > "Monster!" Jean Paul retorted. "How could I have ever been
          so
          > deluded as to desire help from you, even when I was blinded by
          grief?"
          > Jacques' only answer was another rolling laugh, but the
          pause
          > gave Jean Paul a moment to regain a fraction of his composure.
          > "Besides," he told the portrait dispassionately, "it
          doesn't
          > matter why you've brought me here. Your prank is no more than an
          > inconvenience. The Desmond curse is broken, and you no longer
          have
          > any hold over me. I'll leave this island, return to my wife, and
          > never think of this wretched place again."
          > Jacques' laughter deepened, grew even more intense.
          > "You still don't understand, do you, dear kinsman?" the
          spirit
          > chided. "There is nothing to return to."
          > "What mendacity are you spouting now?" Jean Paul demanded.
          > "It's true," Jacques' voice assured him, assuming a tone of
          > mock injury. "A few moments ago you asked me about your precious
          > Emily. I should say that right about now she is determinedly
          > journeying toward Desmondton, a letter from Philip Desmond
          inviting
          > her to make full use of his family's library tucked safely in her
          > handbag."
          > "Has insanity final taken complete hold of you?" Jean Paul
          > asked his ancestor, bewildered. "You're speaking of things that
          > happened last year, after my arrival at Desmond Hall."
          > "Now, Now, Jean Paul. What is time?" the spirit asked
          > enigmatically. "In my current state, having spent hundreds of
          years
          > imprisoned by an effigy, time means little to me. And to a man
          such
          > as you, who is eternally touched with the Mark of Death, it means
          > NOTHING AT ALL."
          > "Enough of your riddles! Explain yourself."
          > "The matter is simply this, my foolish fellow: for better
          or
          > for worse, we are both Desmonds, and both men who have pledged
          > ourselves to a darker power. For the master to whom we are both
          > bound, time is meaningless, a child's plaything to be
          manipulated - or
          > discarded - at his whim."
          > "But the curse is ended!" Jean Paul insisted. "We laid it
          to
          > rest in Desmond Hall. I would never have married Emily,
          otherwise."
          > "Which is exactly why you are here now," Jacques
          > concluded. "Dear fellow, you took and oath. Pledged a bond. The
          One
          > we serve will not release you form that, despite your foolish
          notions
          > to the contrary. Yes, you and your friends at our ancestral home
          did
          > manage to break the curse, to eradicate the Mark. You found your
          > happiness with your woman, and that is why He has brought you
          back
          > here, wiped your slate clean."
          > "What ..." was all that Jean Paul could manage.
          > "You will never be free," Jacques repeated
          simply. "Certainly,
          > you can leave this island. Go to Desmondton again if you wish.
          > Perhaps events will play themselves out in the same fashion
          again, or
          > perhaps not, but one thing is certain. Should you ever manage to
          > dispel the curse, to find peace, you will assuredly find yourself
          > right back here to begin the cycle anew. Time and again."
          > "No escape ..." Jean Paul heard a tiny voice which was his
          own
          > pitifully mumble, as the horror of Jacques' words gave flight to
          his
          > reason.
          > "so you see, truly, wherever you choose to run, Jean Paul
          > Desmond, whatever you do, your curse will follow you," Jacques
          Eloi
          > des Mondes pronounced. "And Life will be, for you, always a
          strange
          > paradise."
          >
          > --- In strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com, "mikeatwost"
          > <mikeatwost@y...> wrote:
          > > Has anyone here ever considered writing their own "Strange
          Paradise"
          > > stories? I know it's been 35 years since the series ended, so
          if
          > > anyone's interested, it probably wouldn't hurt to come up with
          a
          > > timeline detailing any events post-July 22, 1970, such as Jean
          Paul
          > and
          > > Emily's marriage (they had yet to marry when the series ended),
          and
          > the
          > > other Desmonds today.
          > >
          > > I think this thread will get your creative juices flowing.
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > SPONSORED LINKS Horror dvd Paradise Horror book
          > Horror movie poster Horror masks Emily strange
          >
          >
          > --------------------------------------------------------------------
          ----------
          > YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS
          >
          > a.. Visit your group "strangeparadise2" on the web.
          >
          > b.. To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
          > strangeparadise2-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
          >
          > c.. Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms
          of Service.
          >
          >
          > --------------------------------------------------------------------
          ----------
          >
          >
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Deborah Desmond
          Your right, Curt. I wasn t really using my imagination to see a way out for Jean Paul. There could be endless possibilities. For one thing, God always gives
          Message 4 of 4 , Sep 10, 2005
          • 0 Attachment
            Your right, Curt. I wasn't really using my imagination to see a way out for Jean Paul. There could be endless possibilities. For one thing, God always gives us a way out of impossible situations, and He is by far, more powerful than the devil. Nearly all good horror stories, are as much about the power of God, as they are about the fearmongering deception of Satan.

            I'm no writer, but Raxl could be brought back to the story as the "good" priestess that she was, at the beginning of the series. She would know what for Jean Paul to do, to get out of the curse. I'm sure, though, that you could come up with something much better. I always did like the character of Raxl, though, and would like to see her involved somehow.

            Deborah


            ----- Original Message -----
            From: lunatictyme
            To: strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Saturday, September 10, 2005 7:48 PM
            Subject: [Strange Paradise] Re: Strange Paradise Fan Fiction


            Thanks for the feedback, guys! I really do appreciate it, and anyone
            else who feels like commenting, please do. I knew when I conceived
            this idea that it wound up treating Jean Paul terribly. Still, the
            show was above all else a horror series, so I decided to run with
            it. I still may decide to re-write the ending to give, as some of
            you have put it, "a glimmer of hope" to our beloved character, but I
            haven't decided yet. My thought on the subject is this: no matter
            how bleak a situation is, even if it appears totally hopeless, a bit
            of imagination can find a way around it. I didn't really intend this
            to be the ending of a story, but a possible jumping off point for
            more stories. Not that I'm certain that I'll ever re-visit this
            particular piece of fiction again, but it's possible, and anyone else
            out there is welcome to pick things up here if you have your own
            vision. I've already conceived of at least one way that Jean Paul
            might get out of this predicament, but that's just my idea. What
            about you folks out there? Anyone else want to pick up the ball and
            run with it for awhile? Thanks again for taking the time to read my
            stuff and comment on it. I really appreciate it. - Curt

            --- In strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com, "Deborah Desmond" <ozbobz-
            cats@m...> wrote:
            > Very, very good! You must be a writer. I liked all of it, until
            the very end. I would not like that ending for Jean Paul. No hope
            at all! All is lost! Forever to always come back to the same place,
            no escape at all! He would probably commit suicide. That would
            definitely be the end of the story. There would be no reason to go
            on, either for Jean Paul, or the person reading it, or future
            stories.
            > There should always be a glimmer of hope. Something for Jean Paul
            to strive for. At least, that's the way I feel about it.
            > Your writing is very good. Just didn't like the ending.
            > Deborah
            > ----- Original Message -----
            > From: strangeparadiselibrary
            > To: strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com
            > Sent: Saturday, September 10, 2005 12:20 PM
            > Subject: [Strange Paradise] Re: Strange Paradise Fan Fiction
            >
            >
            > Hello folks! I don't usually write fanfic, but Mike's post here
            > started me thinking, and I got this vignette stuck in my head.
            It's
            > just a short little piece that takes place directly after the end
            of
            > the television series, and I'm posting it here in hopes of
            getting
            > some feedback on how to revise it into an even stronger story. I
            hope
            > you all enjoy it, but please let me know what you think,
            regardless of
            > your reaction. Thanks! P.S. If you haven't watched the series
            all
            > the way to the end yet, there are some minor spoilers here.
            >
            > PARADISE REGAINED
            > a STRANGE PARADISE vignette by Curt Ladnier
            >
            > For the first time in an eternity, Jean Paul Desmond was a
            > happy man. Safely ensconced in a comfortable bed with Emily,
            weaving
            > languidly between consciousness and sleep after the first day of
            their
            > life together as man and wife, Jean Paul was truly content. His
            vast
            > riches had never brought him that, nor had his much envied
            > aristocratic heritage. His noble birthright had spawned a waking
            > nightmare, corrupting his first love, transforming her from a
            goddess
            > to an abomination. His Mark of Death pronounced sentence on all
            those
            > around him. But that was all over now, Jean Paul mused as he
            drew
            > closer to the sleeping form of his new bride.
            > Emily was everything that Erica wasn't. Where Erica was
            > flamboyant and vivacious, Emily was bookish and subdued. Erica
            loved
            > a life of parties, status and constant public attention. Emily
            wanted
            > nothing more than to settle down quietly with her husband, to
            begin
            > their new life together. And that suited Jean Paul perfectly.
            After
            > their honeymoon, he would make arrangements for his subordinates
            to
            > attend to the various family businesses, while he and Emily made
            their
            > own home and tended to the business of making a family. The only
            > curse he had to fear now was that of growing old and fat with the
            > passing years. Jean Paul smiled beatifically in his half-sleep
            at the
            > thought.
            > The smell of smoke was his first clue that something was
            > wrong. His eyes snapped open, adrenaline instantly awakening him
            at
            > the thought of a fire. Blinking several times, he looked 'round
            the
            > room for the source of the disturbing scent, but saw no evidence
            of
            > smoke or flames. His concern had no chance to subside however,
            as a
            > new shock gripped Jean Paul's soul. He saw that he was not in
            his
            > honeymoon suite at all. He was gazing over the ruins of his once-
            > luxurious bedroom on Maljardin!
            > For some moments he sat, awestruck, in the smoke damaged
            > wreckage that had once been his bed. It wasn't possible! A year
            > earlier, Jean Paul set his own centuries-old home ablaze in order
            to
            > rid himself of the murderous thing which was masquerading as his
            > beloved Erica, and to purge the spirit of his evil ancestor,
            Jacques
            > Eloi des Mondes, who seemed to have permeated every nook and
            cranny of
            > the great chateau. That had been last year, and a lifetime ago.
            He
            > hadn't as much as seen Maljardin since that day. How could he
            > suddenly be looking over the still-smoldering aftermath of that
            tragic
            > night?
            > "Emily!" he cried abruptly, rousing himself from his stupor
            of
            > confusion. "What ..." But a shock even more profound than he had
            yet
            > experienced caused him to cut his question in mid utterance, and
            > struggle only half successfully to stifle back a scream. Drawing
            > aside the bedclothes in search of comfort in this moment of
            disturbing
            > unreality, Jean Paul did not find the sleeping form of the woman
            who
            > had so lovingly exchanged vows with him before God and witnesses
            less
            > than twenty-four hours earlier. Rather, in bed at his side lay
            the
            > badly charred and blackened corpse of a woman!
            > She had probably been beautiful once - before the flames
            had
            > ravaged her soft, defenseless body. Now she was nothing but a
            mass of
            > red blisters, and blackened flesh, partially covered by the
            remains of
            > an evening dress, the tatters of which had fused to her form in
            > places. The smell, mingling with the scents of the ashes and
            burnt
            > wood, was indescribable.
            > Unabashed terror lifted jean Paul with a wild urge to fling
            > himself blindly from the bed. In his haste to flee, he became
            > entangled in the remnants of the ruined silk sheets and landed in
            a
            > heap only a few feet away. Dazed, he sat there for a long time.
            The
            > situation was incredible, utterly insane. And yet, here he was.
            > Slowly, bit by bit, his traumatized brain began to allow him to
            > process his impossible surroundings. The fear was still there,
            but
            > Jean Paul managed to repress the panic. Losing control would
            > certainly do him no good, and whether the estate was in ashes or
            not,
            > he was still the master of Maljardin.
            > A sudden impulse caused him to rise and return to the
            > grotesque carcass on the bed, something he was almost certain he
            had
            > glimpsed at the moment of his panic. Yes, even a cursory glance
            > confirmed it. There, resting delicately around the dead woman's
            > throat - actually seared into the flesh - was a locket. Erica's
            > locket, which he had given her during happier days. A single
            tear
            > crept down Jean Paul's cheek, despair battling with revulsion
            within
            > his brain, as he realized that he had been lying next to the
            immolated
            > remains of his dead first wife.
            > Turning abruptly, he strode for the door. He had to leave
            > this room before he lost his reason completely. The rest of the
            > chateau was in the same state as the bedroom, ravaged by the
            inferno
            > through which Jean Paul had meant to cleanse his home, to cleanse
            his
            > soul. The main staircase was in dangerous condition, but
            navigable
            > with extreme caution. Some little effort brought Jean Paul to
            the
            > center of the great hall, barely recognizable now as the site
            where
            > the blaze had started.
            > He stood amid the ashes and smoldering remnants of familiar
            > furniture, almost unable to take it all in. This room held
            ghosts for
            > Jean Paul; so many people who had walked and talked here with him
            were
            > now dead. Dead because, in the depths of grief, he had defied
            God.
            > Alison, Dan, Vangie, and all the others - he had opened the
            deadly
            > Pandora's Box which took their lives. Now his guests - his
            friends -
            > whose single fervent wish had been to leave the island were
            permanent
            > inhabitants of Maljardin.
            > Had it really been only a year since the conflagration -
            since
            > Jean Paul had lost consciousness on the steps before the chateau,
            to
            > awaken days later and thousands of miles away? He had lived a
            > lifetime since that night, returning to the home of his youth,
            making
            > long-overdue connections with family members he had not seen in
            years
            > and, of course, meeting Emily. Facing horrors, too. Jean Paul
            > shuddered slightly at their recollection. The destruction of
            > Maljardin had not purged the taint from his family's blood.
            Still, he
            > had faced those demons too, and triumphed. How, then, was he
            here?
            > And why?
            > "Desmondton. Philip. The Mark of Death. Helena. The Key of
            > Life. Emily." he mused vacantly. "Can it all have been some
            wildly
            > vivid dream?"
            > Scarcely had the words escaped his lips when a peal of
            > raucous, mocking laughter assaulted Jean Paul's ears.
            > "A dream? Oh, no, Jean Paul Desmond!" a sickeningly
            familiar
            > voice thundered all around him, seemingly from everywhere at
            > once. "And yet, these events do not exist."
            > "You!" the exclamation escaped Jean Paul in a tight
            > involuntary hiss which caused him momentary pain. Whirling to
            face
            > the wall leading to the foyer, he beheld a sight which his reason
            told
            > him couldn't possibly exist. There, untouched by smoke or flame,
            > unscathed by any devastation, hung a wood-framed canvas. Its
            subject,
            > executed in dark heavy oils, was a handsome if sinister man in
            > cavalier dress whose appearance was strikingly similar to Jean
            Paul
            > himself. The portrait of Jacques Eloi des Mondes! The
            contemptuous
            > laughter continued to echo throughout the house.
            > "I burned you," Jean Paul gasped dumbly. "I set the fire of
            > the torch to your frame and watched it consume your damnable
            visage!"
            > "Fire? Destroy me?" the disembodied voice would have
            sounded
            > playful were it not for the sinister edge which sliced through
            each
            > syllable. "The master whom I serve has a palace filled with the
            > stuff. It will take more than flame to rid you of little old me."
            > "You devil!" Jean Paul spat. "Why have you returned to
            torment
            > me? The Desmond curse is lifted. You have no reason to plague
            us
            > now."
            > "Poor Jean Paul. You're confused," his ancestor
            > laughed. "First you think you've been dreaming, and now you think
            > you're a free man. Whatever shall we do with you?"
            > "I've had enough of your mockeries to last me a lifetime,"
            > returned Jean Paul, crossing the room, closer to the
            portrait. "Why
            > have you brought me here? Where is Emily?"
            > "Emily ... Erica ... Erica ... Emily ... Why are you always
            > imploring me regarding the women in your life?" sneered
            Jacques. "Not
            > that I would mind having either one of them in my bedchamber. Or
            > both."
            > "Enough!" Jean Paul shrieked at the spirit whom he thought
            he
            > had banished forever. "Why am I here?"
            > "We've brought you back where you belong," Jacques stated
            > simply, "and I even placed you back into bed with your darling
            Erica.
            > Isn't that what you begged me for all those months?"
            > "Monster!" Jean Paul retorted. "How could I have ever been
            so
            > deluded as to desire help from you, even when I was blinded by
            grief?"
            > Jacques' only answer was another rolling laugh, but the
            pause
            > gave Jean Paul a moment to regain a fraction of his composure.
            > "Besides," he told the portrait dispassionately, "it
            doesn't
            > matter why you've brought me here. Your prank is no more than an
            > inconvenience. The Desmond curse is broken, and you no longer
            have
            > any hold over me. I'll leave this island, return to my wife, and
            > never think of this wretched place again."
            > Jacques' laughter deepened, grew even more intense.
            > "You still don't understand, do you, dear kinsman?" the
            spirit
            > chided. "There is nothing to return to."
            > "What mendacity are you spouting now?" Jean Paul demanded.
            > "It's true," Jacques' voice assured him, assuming a tone of
            > mock injury. "A few moments ago you asked me about your precious
            > Emily. I should say that right about now she is determinedly
            > journeying toward Desmondton, a letter from Philip Desmond
            inviting
            > her to make full use of his family's library tucked safely in her
            > handbag."
            > "Has insanity final taken complete hold of you?" Jean Paul
            > asked his ancestor, bewildered. "You're speaking of things that
            > happened last year, after my arrival at Desmond Hall."
            > "Now, Now, Jean Paul. What is time?" the spirit asked
            > enigmatically. "In my current state, having spent hundreds of
            years
            > imprisoned by an effigy, time means little to me. And to a man
            such
            > as you, who is eternally touched with the Mark of Death, it means
            > NOTHING AT ALL."
            > "Enough of your riddles! Explain yourself."
            > "The matter is simply this, my foolish fellow: for better
            or
            > for worse, we are both Desmonds, and both men who have pledged
            > ourselves to a darker power. For the master to whom we are both
            > bound, time is meaningless, a child's plaything to be
            manipulated - or
            > discarded - at his whim."
            > "But the curse is ended!" Jean Paul insisted. "We laid it
            to
            > rest in Desmond Hall. I would never have married Emily,
            otherwise."
            > "Which is exactly why you are here now," Jacques
            > concluded. "Dear fellow, you took and oath. Pledged a bond. The
            One
            > we serve will not release you form that, despite your foolish
            notions
            > to the contrary. Yes, you and your friends at our ancestral home
            did
            > manage to break the curse, to eradicate the Mark. You found your
            > happiness with your woman, and that is why He has brought you
            back
            > here, wiped your slate clean."
            > "What ..." was all that Jean Paul could manage.
            > "You will never be free," Jacques repeated
            simply. "Certainly,
            > you can leave this island. Go to Desmondton again if you wish.
            > Perhaps events will play themselves out in the same fashion
            again, or
            > perhaps not, but one thing is certain. Should you ever manage to
            > dispel the curse, to find peace, you will assuredly find yourself
            > right back here to begin the cycle anew. Time and again."
            > "No escape ..." Jean Paul heard a tiny voice which was his
            own
            > pitifully mumble, as the horror of Jacques' words gave flight to
            his
            > reason.
            > "so you see, truly, wherever you choose to run, Jean Paul
            > Desmond, whatever you do, your curse will follow you," Jacques
            Eloi
            > des Mondes pronounced. "And Life will be, for you, always a
            strange
            > paradise."
            >
            > --- In strangeparadise2@yahoogroups.com, "mikeatwost"
            > <mikeatwost@y...> wrote:
            > > Has anyone here ever considered writing their own "Strange
            Paradise"
            > > stories? I know it's been 35 years since the series ended, so
            if
            > > anyone's interested, it probably wouldn't hurt to come up with
            a
            > > timeline detailing any events post-July 22, 1970, such as Jean
            Paul
            > and
            > > Emily's marriage (they had yet to marry when the series ended),
            and
            > the
            > > other Desmonds today.
            > >
            > > I think this thread will get your creative juices flowing.
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > SPONSORED LINKS Horror dvd Paradise Horror book
            > Horror movie poster Horror masks Emily strange
            >
            >
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            >
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            SPONSORED LINKS Horror dvd Paradise Horror book
            Horror movie poster Horror masks Emily strange


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