ARKHAM, Mass. — In an unprecedented event of cosmic proportions, the world’s Great Old Ones summoned reporters from Massachusetts and the surrounding region to Miskatonic University for an impromptu press conference. Henry Akeley, Vermont resident and expert in local folklore, served as spokesperson for the group of ancient entities, who were not present at the event due to the fact that the merest glimpse of their corporeal forms would cause instant insanity and/or death to the assembled journalists.

Mr. Akeley, who was draped in long robes and stood at an unilluminated podium, apologized in a whisper for any inconvenience caused by the unusual midnight hour of the media event. “We must convene when the stars are aligned most auspiciously,” he said, as the audience strained to hear his words. He paused to adjust the microphone. After some difficulty, he continued in an amplified, strangely buzzing voice, “I am privileged today to represent the Great Old Ones, who transcend space and time, and who have brought you to this place to address certain rumors that have been damaging their brand.”

Dagon: deadbeat dad?

A woman with an odd, shambling gait and a hat pulled low over her eyes moved to the front of the crowd and raised a hand that looked strangely webbed. “Virginia Marsh, Innsmouth Inquirer,” she stated in a slow, gurgling voice. “What is your comment on the ongoing sex scandal involving Dagon’s illegitimate children and the allegations of deliquent child support?”

Mr. Akeley replied, “Dagon, and his associates the Deep Ones, deny parentage of any and all children born to single mothers in Innsmouth over the last several hundred years. In addition, no child support suit brought against them has ever been successful. Next question.”

Public relations horror in Dunwich

A man in the crowd raised his hand and called out, “I’m from the Dunwich Gazette. Speaking of illegitimate children, when is Yog-Sothoth going to take responsibility for the property damage his bastard son caused? Our town is in ruins because of that monster, and most of the surviving citizens are now insane!”

Mr. Akeley responded, “Yog-Sothoth is aware of the situation in Dunwich, and his thoughts and prayers are with the community at this difficult time. However, as his ex-girlfriend Ms. Whateley had full custody of their children and the damage occured on her property, Yog-Sothoth cannot be held financially responsible. We have time for one more question.”

Cultists wonder: Cthulhu hitting snooze on apocalypse alarm?

A dark figure, draped in long robes and standing apart from the group, spoke next. “I’d rather not give my name. I’d just like to know when our great lord Cthulhu, who lies dreaming in the sunken city of R’lyeh, will awaken and grace us with his presence. We’ve been worshipping him all our lives and long to look upon his terrifying visage.”

Mr. Akeley replied that Cthulhu would wake when the stars were properly aligned, and that even his closest associates didn’t know when he would return to wreak destruction and havoc upon the earth, causing the deaths of millions and the inevitable insanity of anyone who somehow managed to survive. However, in his final remarks before closing out the event, Mr. Akeley stated that Cthulhu has not ruled out the possibility of a presidential campaign later this year.

About the Author

Kristin Cleaves writes horror and dark fiction. Her work has been published by Quill and Crow Publishing House, Ghost Orchid Press, Black Telephone Magazine, and more.

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