ADULT CONTENT WARNING: Please be advised that this podcast is based on biblical texts, and may therefore contain adult themes not suitable for children. Episode content warnings: mention of cannibalism, personification of death, death by…
ADULT CONTENT WARNING: Please be advised that this podcast is based on biblical texts, and may therefore contain adult themes not suitable for children.
Episode content warnings: mention of cannibalism, personification of death, death by drowning (not described), some violence (stoning)
Chakree Chakattack M
SCENE 0: INTRO
ENOCH: Be not afraid. My name is Enoch, appointed Metatron, and I am an angel of the Lord, here to deliver a special message to you. Yes, you. Chosen one, wherever you may be. You will pass on these messages to the people in your vicinity. It’s not something you need to worry about. It will happen either way. Such is the way of the prophet. But for the time being, all you need to do is listen carefully.
Let’s look inside the Vortex of Events together, shall we? Endless paths converging and intertwining. Lives lost, gained, born again. Stories told and retold and changed and… ah. An event is taking shape. The edges are coming in closer, coming together and crystallizing into- There we go. It starts with bad weather.
FX: Rain and thunder
(BNA INTRO SONG)
SCENE 1: NOAH MEETS DEATH
ENOCH: Noah stands before the ancestral altar, high up in the mountains. Spiritual people love mountains. And birds, and trees, and of course, the altar. Its design is strangely sophisticated for this era. Intricate shapes are swirled around masterfully sculpted steps, and yet, it somehow looks completely organic. At the top of the steps is a circular area with a perfectly leveled rise in the center. However, neither tool nor hand was used in the altars’ creation. Instead, the entire structure danced its way into existence to the sweet tunes of angelic song. That’s how the story goes anyway, and it’s not too far away from the truth.
There are countless stories surrounding this particular altar. Legends of the first people, of when angels walked among them, of forbidden knowledge shared too soon.
NOAH: (Speaks formally) Wise ones. I come before you as a humble servant. The people in my village, my neighbors and fellowmen, they- (sigh) we really need your help. Methuselah, my grandmother, has often told me about the olden days. This used to be a wonderful place. I remember some of it. During my upbringing, they all worked together to improve the village, and built the machines we use today to grow food in abundance. Grandmother insists that it was possible because the angels came to us and revealed vast amounts of knowledge, but I don’t remember any of that. But, these people.. my people have decided that it’s a lot more fun to drink, steal and fight. And it is fun. A lot of fun.
FX: Noah chuckles at memories, but quickly corrects his voice to speak formally
NOAH: But not too much fun. And it’s not like I do it ALL the time. Not like them. It’s all they ever do, every day it gets worse than the day before. Yesterday someone even got the brilliant idea to take a bite out of someone else’s arm. Just for fun. It tasted like chicken.
FX: Noah convulses in disgust
NOAH: I didn’t try it. He told me.
FX: Noah convulses again
NOAH: I don’t want my children to grow up in a place like this. How am I supposed to teach my children about responsibility when it is not rewarded? Quite the opposite actually. They stoned Old man Bob last week for suggesting a cleaning schedule for the 57th time. Sure, he could have phrased it differently, but no one should be stoned for pointing out the obvious.
I have also made some careful attempts to suggest we set a better example for the next generation. Appreciate what we’ve been given. But they think I’m crazy to believe in magical people from the sky. And maybe I am. Why have you never answered me? I have prayed and prayed but all I’ve ever gotten is silence in return. Are you even listening? Hey! Answer me! Tell me what to do, and I’ll do it happily. Just, say anything. GOD!? GOOOOOOOD!!!
FX: Noah slumps to the ground, panting
NOAH: (Silent, muttering) Methuselah said you used to send angels to help with anything and everything. Why won’t you come now…. Is anyone even there?
FX: low humming at a thus far undiscovered frequency
NOAH: What is that…?
FX: Footsteps and rain. Footsteps stop.
ENOCH: After following the strange humming sound, he finally finds the source. In an open glade, he sees…
Intense darkness. Which is not a strange thing to encounter in the middle of the night, but this is a dark that rivals the deepest pits of Hell. And it’s breathing…?
The dark formless spirit is occupied with a human soul – quite recently deceased. The darkness spreads its four wings and welcomes the soul into a comforting embrace. They stay like that for a long time, the
NOAH: (To himself) Who..?
ENOCH: The shadowy entity turns, and from the darkness of its formless body, thousands of eyes open up, all fixed on Noah. Giving it the very elegant impression of a very menacing starry sky. (NOAH: Shit shit shit! (scrambling to get away))
The entity seemingly only takes one step, and is looming over Noah like a bird of prey. Noah can do nothing but stare in horror, as black wings open up to reveal four faces staring right back at him.
SAMAEL: Be not afraid, Noah.
NOAH: (Terrified) No! Don’t hurt me please! I have a family. I have to take little Japhet to see the cave paintings tomorrow as I do every Friday. He’s only 29 years old, you see. Please sir, think of the children-
SAMAEL: If you die, you die. We take you then. But we are not in the business of killing.
NOAH: Wh-what…? Then, what was that just now?
SAMAEL: We care for the dead, it is our duty.
NOAH: (collapses and starts crying) I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be so frightened of you. I don’t even know which face to look at. I came to request help.
SAMAEL: Let me fold myself into something more… humanoid.
FX: Synth-y noise of dimensions being shuffled around
SAMAEL: (A few voices shorter) Better?
NOAH: (shaking, stuttering) Sure. At least I only have one face to focus on. (nervous laugh)
SAMAEL: We were in the area, working, and we heard you praying. You might take solace and joy in the fact that life in this vicinity will cease, very soon. All your problems will be gone.
NOAH: You mean… everyone is going to die? Take “solace”? In everyone dying? Are you the one in charge? If this is a punishment, it’s way out of proportion.
SAMAEL: We do not know the ways of the Almighty.
NOAH: You’re not him? Oh. How will it happen?
SAMAEL: We only see the deaths on the horizon, not the cause. It is an abnormal number. All will be gone in 40 days.
NOAH: A month!? (SAMAEL IN BG: And a half.) That’s not enough time! What am I supposed to do?
SAMAEL: We may not know the will of the Lord, but we will not stop you from, say, asking someone for help. Someone you know, in high places.
FX: Crack of thunder
NOAH: Wait! What does that even mean? Hey! Come back! I want to speak to that Lord of yours.
ENOCH: But the angel is gone. That angel, my dear prophets and entities, was Samael. To put it very plainly, they are an angel of death, or rather, the angel of death. Expert at extracting souls, Archangel of heaven as well as king of hell. It’s complicated. Death is universal, and it does not pick sides.
SCENE 2: SECRET MEETING
BG: Rain stops, sudden silence
ENOCH: Um. Excuse me. I am getting some kind of interference. Everything is dark. I don’t know what happened. Ah. We appear to be in outer space. A backdrop of stars and planets are wandering their elliptical paths as far as my eyes can see. Not part of any constellations I know of. And I’m supposed to know everything. Oh. I can feel a smile at the back of my mind.
GOD: WHY DO I EVEN BOTHER? CREATING EARTH WAS A MISTAKE.
???: That’s not true. The fleshy, talking monkeys on the other hand…
GOD: UGH, I KNOW. THEY ARE HOPELESS. ALL THIS… GREED AND VIOLENCE. EVERYTHING IS OUT OF BALANCE. NO! IT’S NOT THEIR FAULT. IT WAS THE WATCHERS. IF ONLY THEY HADN’T SHARED ALL THAT KNOWLEDGE WITH THE HUMANS. IT WASN’T THEIRS TO GIVE. IT WAS TOO MUCH, TOO SOON. THERE’S NO WAY TO UNDO IT. AND THERE ARE STILL THOSE ABOMINATIONS WALKING THE EARTH. IF ONLY I HAD MADE THE MEATSUITS SMOOTHER…
???: Still regretting the genitalia, huh?
GOD: BOLD OF YOU TO ASSUME I REGRET ANYTHING.
???: (SNORTS) Okay. Sure. Here’s a thought. Start over, clean slate. Destroy it all so you can try again.
GOD: YES, THAT COULD WORK. THERE ARE ONLY FOURTEEN CONCERNS GOING DOWN THAT ROUTE… NO. I COULD NOT.
???: But I could. One big storm is all it takes.
???: Did you hear something?
SCENE 3: NOAH MEETS ENOCH
ENOCH: Strange. Anywho. Looks like my signal has cleared up. Oh! And look, there’s Noah.
He staggers, looking for any sign that this is all a dream. The cold rain feels tangible enough. Could his grandmother’s stories be true? He huffs and marches in a tight circle. It’s pitch black after all, with no moon or starlight breaking through the heavy storm clouds. You don’t get to be Noah’s age without pacing safely. All the while muttering and pulling at his soaked clothes so hard his knuckles are white.
NOAH: This isn’t fair… Hhrrrrggg. What does that even mean, “high places”? Can’t believe I’m doing this. Fine. Angels! Let’s see, there’s uh… GABRIEL! … MICHAEL! …URIEL! SARIEL! PHENUEL, AZAZ-
FX: Flock of birds take flight
NOAH: Ah. No. I don’t know any more! (PAUSE) AAAAAAHHH!!!! (Hands over his face, breathing heavily. Then:)
NOAH: (QUIETLY, CAREFULLY) Enoch?
ENOCH: Surely that’s a coincidence. Lots of people are named Enoch. It was actually the baby name of the year, five years in a row! At one time.
NOAH: My great grandfather who never died, but took off to the skies with the angels. He’s in high places… ENOCH!? We need your help. You may not know me, but you must remember Methuselah?
ENOCH: (sigh) I had hoped to stay neutral in this broadcast. You see prophets, Noah is my great grandson by my daughter Methuselah. She was just a baby when I- changed. She has to be at least some 900 odd years by now. Feels like only days passed. Time is a confusing construct, if you ask me. But now my great grandson is calling my name through the vortex. What if-
NOAH: Enoch, I am calling upon you!
ENOCH: Shit. Shit! What should I do? Ben?
ENOCH: Uh-huh. There’s no protocol for this. This doesn’t happen to be a two-way communication kind of vortex. Is it?
(Ahem) (RUMBLE FX) NOAH? I CAN HEAR YOU!
(BG: Noah is knocked to the ground from the sheer force of the sound wave)
ENOCH: I think that worked! I mean, unless he just fell over. He is about 600 years old. Guess it could happen. Maybe there’s a way for me to materialize. What was it I did last time? Something like
FX: ZOOP, SPLASH
ENOCH: Ooh, that’s cold! Good. It worked.
NOAH: Hey! Where did you come from!? Are you an angel?
ENOCH: It’s me, Enoch.
NOAH: Uh-uh. Enoch wasn’t a woman. (Chuckles)
ENOCH: There’s no time for this, I have to tell you something-
I feel the vortex tugging on me. Apparently I can’t stay here for long.
NOAH: What’s a vortex? What are those slithery glowing things around you?
ENOCH: Noah, listen to me, I’m really sorry, I wish I could tell you more. This has to be some kind of mistake. This is all going to be under water in no time. But don’t you worry, I’ll talk to God. He’ll fix this. In the meantime, gather everyone you know. Do everything you can to stay alive. Swimming won’t do you any good. The mountains won’t save you either. You all need to start build-
SCENE 4: FAILED RECRUITMENT
ENOCH: -ing boats like there’s no tomorrow, and… Okay. I’m. Back in my studio. I hope that was enough to help him. Ben! Any messages while I was out?
ENOCH: Ah. No. Of course not. I have to make some calls, let me pause the transmission for a bit. I’ll be right with you, prophets.
FX: Elevator music
ENOCH: And we’re back. None the wiser. It seems that entities don’t like being called upon. Anyway, let’s return to the broadcast. Each day, the weather gets more hostile. As if the unrelenting storm wasn’t enough, the ground begins to rumble, as waters of the deep burst forth into violent fountains. Not even the Nephilim can survive a blow from the exploding geysers. Humans and other land dwelling animals fare even worse. The river grows ever wider and wave upon wave claims one life after another.
Noah and his family have been working tirelessly on building a… I hope it’s a boat. He had hoped that the rest of the villagers would follow suit, but alas. Most of them are packing their belongings and preparing to take refuge in the mountains. Noah has decided that he must try to convince them to come with him.
NOAH: Ahem… Dear fellow men… no… Hello villagers!… no…
FX: Murmuring voices
NOAH: Ah screw it. Listen up everyone! We’re in a dire situation! Many of you have lost family and friends already. And I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but the storm is only going to get worse. Everything will be under water soon. If we are to survive this we need to work together. But fear not! I have a plan!
VILLAGER 1: Oh it’s Noah again…
NOAH: Me and my family have started to build a house-boat! Bringing a few animals with us too. We will ride out the storm in it. We will fish by day and feast by night. Not much different from everyday life, a bit more cramped maybe, but I’m sure it will be great! But I need your help to build it even bigger for everyone to fit in it.
VILLAGER 1: Hmm.. Sounds good actually. We can use wood from all of the broken houses. If we work together it’ll be done in no time.
VILLAGER 2: Great! Well you know me, built boats since I was two apples tall, so I’m sure we can handle it. Come on lads, let’s build the greatest ship anyone’s ever built!
FX: Cheering people.
VILLAGER 3: Hang on a minute. A vacation in the mountains until it blows over seems a lot easier. How can you be so sure the storm won’t just pass?
NOAH: Because I have spoken to Enoch! Yes, the one who became an angel and the voice of God! He told me that there’s been some kind of misunderstanding and that it’s not supposed to rain this much. We need to do whatever it takes to survive until he sorts this out.
VILLAGER 1: Oh, I see. It’s one of those things again.
NOAH: I’m telling the truth! I have also spoken to the god of death. He told me that he saw–
VILLAGER2: Yep, he’s crazy. The mountains it is. It’s just a bit of bad weather, it’ll pass eventually.
NOAH: But you don’t understand! The mountains won’t be safe!
VILLAGER 1: It’s safer than going on a boat with a madman!
VILLAGER 2: BOOOOO!!!
NOAH: Please, listen to me.
FX: Stone swishing by close
NOAH: Hey! Who threw that!? I’m trying to help you.
FX: dogs barking
VILLAGER 1: We don’t need your wacky ideas! You’re a bad influence on our children.
FX: More stones are thrown. Noah grunts as he his hit
NOAH: Stop it!
FX: Glitch, signalling a change in scenery…
SCENE 5: SECRET MEETING 2
ENOCH: Oh. We are in outer space again- far out.
GOD: …WE HAVE COME SO FAR. I COULD NEVER DO THAT.
???: I could.
GOD: YOU JUST WANT THEM GONE. I NEED CREATION TO WORK. IT NEEDS BALANCE.
???: Hey, old friend. Let me help you. I can MAKE it work for you.
GOD: IF I CAN’T DO IT, HOW COULD YOU?
???: Love clouds your vision from what needs to be done. Trust me.
ENOCH: (Slightly muffled) Lord? If I may, please, I did not mean to eavesdrop, but the vortex… There’s a situation I need to talk to you about. My grandson, he –
???: Don’t you hear that? And the smell… Anyway, how about I only take this bit around this puddle… The Mediterranean sea? That’s where all your troubles are.
GOD: NO, THAT’S TOO MANY.
???: One cluster, that’s all I need to test my theory. See that valley? It’s already modeled as a tub. You thinking what I’m thinking?
GOD: GO ON. WE NEVER HAD THIS CONVERSATION, UNDERSTAND?
???: On one condition.
SCENE 6: BEFORE TAKEOFF
ENOCH: I wonder. That’s all I ever do these days. But I remain calm and neutral and collected. I am not afraid. Whatever goings on behind the scenes will be, well, have been revealed at some point in timespace. I’ll find out eventually.
Noah is working hard as ever. Dark circles under his eyes, bruises on his hands and torn clothes. The signs of a man on a holy mission. Should I tell him? Can I? I don’t even know how long I can stay materialized. I might get swept away again before I get to… No. I have to try.
FX: rope creaking, distant rain
NOAH: (muttering) How did granny do that sturdy knot? A rabbit leaps through the hoop before the fox jumps out (FX in BG: Enoch zoops onto the scene) and makes the rabbit go round and round before the fox catches up and …
FX: Rope cracks as it is pulled into a tight knot
NOAH: There! Still got it.
NOAH: Huh? Enoch! Thank God you’re here! We’re nearly finished (triumphantly). I couldn’t convince everyone, but at least I got twenty three–
ENOCH: I know, I saw most of it. Noah, listen.
NOAH: Maybe we can sail to the mountains when we’re seaborne rescue as many as we can.
NOAH: Or maybe ropes are enough. Most of them know how to swim so-
ENOCH: I got a hold of the almighty. God. I’m sorry, it’s not good news. Everyone is supposed to be wiped out. I can’t help you.
FX: Vortex whispering
ENOCH: Noah, don’t… I belie-
ENOCH: -eve in you. Oh, I’m back in my studio. As I tried to catch Noah in his fall, I was swept back right before I could catch him. Now he lays there on the muddy wooden floor.
NOAH: But you said… I… We worked so hard. For nothing. It’s over. What am I supposed to tell the others? “Drop your tools, God hates you”. That’ll break them.
AMZARA: (worried) Love? Who are you talking to?
NOAH: I talked to… He was right th- (Sigh) No one… I’m just thinking out loud.
AMZARA: Sounds like really intense thinking. Come inside, have some warm milk. You need to rest.
FX: Metal mugs rattle, stirring
NOAH: Thanks Amzara, this is really good.
AMZARA: So. What’s up?
NOAH: You know, Amzara, I’ve been thinking. As you heard. I’ve been thinking that maybe the mountains aren’t such a bad idea after all? Maybe we’ll live, maybe we’ll die, who knows. At least we’ll be with our tribe.
AMZARA: But.. I don’t understand. You talked to the angels. This is the only way to survive. That’s what you’ve said all along. And you have us, your family and closest friends right here. Isn’t that all that matters?
NOAH: Amzara. I. was. wrong. Okay? There’s no guarantee that this will be enough. It was a misunderstanding. God wants us dead and gone.
AMZARA: No, you’re wrong. What was it that the dark angel said?
NOAH: I’ll never forget those words… “Life in this vicinity will cease.”
AMZARA: Exactly! So we need to get away from “this vicinity”. Listen, you can do anything you set your mind to. What better way to get away from this place than with a boat? It’s genius really.
NOAH: Amzara, you’re not listening. God, the actual creator of everything, wants us to die.
AMZARA: All I’m saying is that there is a chance… (sigh) I can’t stand the thought of just sitting around and waiting for our demise.
NOAH: No, you’re right. I couldn’t do that either. But what are we supposed to do? It’s impossible to make a decision under these circumstances. This is massive! Everything will die! What are we supposed to do when the universe conspires against us?
AMZARA: Maybe… build a boat?
NOAH: Huh? Just because that shady creature said “vicinity”? Enoch said that we’re supposed to be wiped out. And you know what the last thing he said was? He said “Noah, don’t”. Like he wanted me to stop trying.
AMZARA: Think about it. What have we got to lose? We’ll die either way.
NOAH: Hmm… You’re right, of course. I dragged you all into this. The children, our friends and even the animals. As long as I still draw breath I will fight for our survival. No matter how slim our chances are, no matter how difficult the challenges may be, I will face them head held high. And right now that means building a boat. And we’re going to get away from this vicinity!
FX: heavy footsteps, opening hatch
NOAH: DO YOU HEAR ME ENOCH! WE’RE GONNA MAKE-
AMZARA: Noah! Sssshhh! Hush now darling, calm down. You’ll wake the others. You can pick a fight with God after this is over.
SCENE 7: SPLASHY MONTAGE
ENOCH: True to his word, Noah works even harder than before. Filled with the wrath of the righteous he pushes his followers close to exhaustion. They close and seal the gate just before the water reaches the boat.
The ship lurches back and forth as the waves hit the hull from every side. Days turn to weeks as the crew adjusts to their new living arrangements. Soon enough, the survivors find that life on the boat is quite pleasant, considering the alternative.
Twenty three human beings are accounted for, aside from Noah’s immediate family.
Many days go by, and together Noah and Amzara manage to keep everyone happy and safe.
FX: Rain stops. Waves, seagulls.
NOAH: (counting) …eighty two, eighty three, eighty four days!
AMZARA: I never thought we’d be at sea for such a long time.
NOAH: Me either, and I thought food would be the biggest problem, but it turns out it was… you-know-who.
AMZARA: Ah haha! She’s not that bad if you give her a chance.
AMZARA: Hey, what’s that? Is it…
NOAH: A bird! With a stick!
ENOCH: They embrace each other, and their cheers echo across the surface of the water.
SCENE 8: GROUND BENEATH THEIR FEET
Villager 4: It’s a sign! The Gods have forgiven us. This means they won’t ever test us like this again. Uhhh, right, Noah?
ENOCH: And so, the ship runs aground on a very stony shore. The motion of the sea still linger in their legs as they step out onto solid ground. Miraculously, the earth has restored remarkably fast, from gray mud, into green hills. The people marvel, as a vibrant rainbow stretches across the sky.
NOAH: Yep. Marvellous. (Heavy sigh) If you’ll excuse me, I need to plant a vineyard.
AMZARA: (Tired) I’ll help you.