Another pair of double doors, another sign, this one reading “Warning: Pale Entity. No Passage”.
You might wonder what would possess a man to open a door with a sign like that on it, but I suppose our hero figured that following the rules hadn’t exactly helped him so far. In any case, he cashed in the credibility chips he had acquired with his earlier sensible behavior by going on through.
Witness: I was in the saloon at the time, your Honor, and I see this man Smith come up all of a sudden to Jones, who warn’t saying a word, and split him in the snoot -
Lawyer: Did what, Sir?
Witness: Busted him in the snoot.
Lawyer: What do you mean by such language as that? When you say that the plaintiff suddenly approached the defendant, who was silent at the time, and ‘busted him in the snoot,’ do you mean that the plaintiff struck the defendant?
Witness: That’s me - I’m swearing to that very circumstance - yes, your Honor, that was just the way of it. Now, for instance, as if you was Jones and I was Smith. Well, I comes up all of a sudden and says I to your Honor, says I, ’D__n your old tripe - ’ [Suppressed laughter in the lobbies.]
The Court: Order in the court! Witness, you will confine yourself to a plain statement of the facts in this case, and refrain from the embellishments of metaphor and allegory as far as possible.
Witness: (Considerably subdued.) I beg your Honor’s pardon - I didn’t mean to be so brash. Well, Smith comes up to Jones all of a sudden and mashed him in the bugle -
Lawyer: Stop! Witness, this kind of language will not do. I will ask you a plain question, and I require you to answer it simply, yes or no. Did—the—plaintiff—strike--the defendant? Did he strike him?
Witness: You bet your sweet life he did. Gad! he gave him a paster in the trumpet -
Lawyer: Take the witness! take the witness! take the witness! I have no further use for him.”
Ye Unkempt Thing by WH Pugmire. Published in Encounters with Enoch Coffin by WH Pugmire and Jeffrey Thomas.
Eh, I love this book.
From The Unnamable by HP Lovecraft, wherein our protagonist, Carter, is chided by his companion…
Besides, he added, my constant talk about “unnamable” and “unmentionable” things was a very puerile device, quite in keeping with my lowly standing as an author. I was too fond of ending my stories with sights or sounds which paralysed my heroes’ faculties and left them without courage, words, or associations to tell what they had experienced. We know things, he said, only through our five senses or our religious intuitions; wherefore it is quite impossible to refer to any object or spectacle which cannot be clearly depicted by the solid definitions of fact or the correct doctrines of theology—preferably those of the Congregationalists, with whatever modifications tradition and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle may supply.