Rev. Warlock DRACONIS BLACKTHORNE (dblackthorne) wrote,

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Child of Satan, Child of God

Child of Satan, Child of God
by Susan Atkins
{1977 c.e., Logos International. Chapter 7: "Break". Pages 65-73. Section concerning Anton LaVey}.
[Describes Atkins' pre-Manson meeting with Dr. LaVey for his use of her for the "Topless Witches' review". Discriminate with care].

It was a slow afternoon, and I considered my first thirty-minute routine as merely a warm-up for the wilder things to come with nightfall. I was just finishing when Mr. Garnet, the owner, walked in with a man I had not seen before. The room was quite dark but the afternoon sunlight splashed through the swinging door behind them. The man seemed to be dressed entirely in black. His face and the top of his bald head were extraordinarily pale - white.

Garnet and the stranger walked toward me. "Sharon," my boss said as I reached for a wrap and moved toward the side of the stage. "Sharon, I'd like you to dance one more number."

"But I've just finished, Mr. Garnet."

"I know, sweetheart," he smiled, "but I'd like for you to do one more number for Mr. LaVey here. This is Mr. Anton LaVey."

I smiled at the man. His gaze was a intense as any I'd ever seen, even though his mouth was smiling. His eyes seemed to be black - and glistening.

"It's important, Sharon." Garnet said. "You can stretch your break a bit afterward."

"Okay." I walked over to Tommy the bartender and told him to put on my favorite record. "I might as well give him the works," I mumbled to Tommy.

The intensity of the stranger's black eyes deepened as he watched my movements. A smile curled about his lips. I slipped into one of my fantasies about Sharon King the dancer, the sensuous, long-legged, full-breasted movie starlet, the Broadway queen. The music penetrated the lower depths of my abdomen and up into my chest cavity. It possessed me.

Garnet motioned me to the small table where he and Mr. LaVey were seated. "She is one of my best girls, Mr. LaVey. Do you think there's a part for her in your production?"

"Hello Sharon." LaVey's voice sounded as though it were in an echo chamber. "That was very good."

He turned to Garnet. "Yes. Yes. She would be very good for the vampire role."

"Vampire role?" I asked, silently.

Garnet turned to me. "You see, Sharon. Mr. LaVey has agreed to stage one of his productions here at the club - a witches' sabbath - topless and all - and I think it could be fun for you if you're interested."

"What's a witches' sabbath?" I asked, looking first at Mr. Garnet and then back at the bald-headed man.

LaVey threw his head back and gave a barking sort of laugh. "It's a time, my dear, when the witches worship their leader - Satan. It's a marvelous ceremony and will be very colorful for your club. It's a bit out of the ordinary."

I shrugged. "It sounds it." I thought it was weird, but it might be the trick to launch my career. "Sure, if Mr. Garnet wants me in it, he's the boss."

"Good. Good." LaVey rubbed his palms together.

"But what about costumes and all that, Mr. Garnet?" I asked, trying to understand the thing better.

"Don't you worry about those details," LaVey interrupted. "You won't need much to wear. Besides, we will be having a meeting at my house to discuss these matters. It will all work out."

He turned to Garnet. "I think she will be excellent. And she will also be good for the witch in the torture scene."

"Torture scene?" Again I only spoke to myself.

"It's been nice meeting you, Sharon," LaVey said to me, turning to walk away. "I know you will find this most interesting."

I was near exhaustion the next night. The men in the crowd demanded more of me than I was able to perform. They seemed to want explicit sex acts, not merely free dancing by nearly naked young women. They equate dancers with hookers. I welcomed Garnet's high sign to cut my last number short and come to his table.

"Sharon," he said, "I know tomorrow is your day off, but I would like to have you join the other selected girls and me in going to Mr. LaVey's house. He wants to fill us in on the witches' sabbath and black magic. We've got to start preparing."

"Why his house?" I was still uneasy about LaVey.

"It's all part of a Satan worship routine. You know anything about that?"

My silence spoke for itself.

"Everyone has his own hustle going," Garnet said. "LaVey's is this Satan thing. He calls himself the high priest of Satan. He's a full-fledged honcho in that stuff. His wife is a full-fledged witch. They have a Satan church in their home. It's a big thing around here."

"You're kidding. You mean they really worship Satan? It's not just for show?"

"Hell no. They really mean business. Of course," he grinned, "they put on a really good show too. It's good show business. And that's what I need right now - something to get us out in front of the other clubs. We can be the hottest thing on the strip."

He paused, looking first at the drink in his hand and then into my face. His mouth was set. "So I need you to come with us tomorrow. We'll leave from here at three o'clock."

"All right, Mr. Garnet. But only because I need the job. I don't go for this Satan stuff."

He laughed. "Neither do I, but business is business."

We turned the corner and there was no mistaking LaVey's house. It sat in he middle of the block, with empty lots on each side. The house was wholly black. Not one bit of white or other color showed. Even the curtains were black.

"Wow!" one fo the girls wheezed softly.

"This is weird," I said.

"Look at the lawn," Garnet said. "It's all weeds and dirt."

He was right. Nothing of any beauty seemed to be growing around the two-story black monster.

"What a place for Halloween!" one of the girls said. We all laughed, a bit too loudly.

When I stepped out of the car, I was actually shaking.

"Mr. Garnet," I asked weakly, "are we really going into that house?"

"Aw, come on, Sharon. If you don't believe in black magic, nothing can hurt you. Don't be afraid."

I wasn't convinced. I dont believe the other girls were either.

Garnet reached for the doorbell. I expected a gong, or a howl, or something. It was an ordinary "ding dong."

The door opened, and there stood LaVey, all in black, his powdery white skin glowing. I felt sick at my stomach as I walked past him. His smile was sickly, I thought. Then I froze in my steps. Straight ahead at the far end of the entrance hall was a human skeleton in a glass case. It seemed to have the same sickly smile as LaVey.

"This is all the horror movies rolled into one." I thought.

"What am I doing here? I wonder if I'll get out of here in one piece."

"Please come right into the living room," LaVey said, with refined politeness. His manners were exaggeratedly excellent.

My stomach sickness immediately deepened. The first object to attract my eyes in the living room was a huge, black grand piano. That was okay. But right beside it stood stuffed, full-grown wolf, and atop the piano itself was a stuffed raven. The fireplace mantle held a large stuffed owl.

LaVey and Garnet launched immediately into discussion of the witches' sabbath. But I had trouble maintaining concentration. The decor of the house was beyond my imagination. I examined the stuffed animals and found myself shivering. Their eyes seemed alive.

"The May pole ritual is a fertility dance." LaVey's voice penetrated my consciousness for a moment.

I smiled and felt a giggle inside. "I played that all the time when I was a kid," I thought, "how come I'm not pregnant?"

The giggle choked inside me as I caught a glimpse out of the corner of my eye of someone descending the staircase in the hallway. It was a woman with the longest hair I'd ever seen. It was as black as it could possibly be and hung at least three feet below her shoulders, full and thick. At first I thought it must be a wig, but it was real.

"Ah, my wife," said LaVey, rising.

"Hello, everybody," the woman said, softly and seductively. Her manners were as impeccable as her husband's. She stood for a minute, smiling warmly at everyone, and then said, "Would you girls like to come into the kitchen with me? I'm going to prepare some coffee."

"Yes, ladies, why don't you go with Mrs. LaVey while we finish up these details? But we'll be finished soon, and I do want you to stay for our evening services. Things will come a lot clearer to you when you see it first hand."

We all looked quickly at one another.

I spoke first, and my voice was not particularly steady.

"I'm afraid I won't be able to stay, Mr. LaVey. I hope you won't be offended, but I don't believe in the devil, and..."

LaVey interrupted me with a wave of the hand and a wide smile across his white face. "But, Sharon, we dont believe in God either, but that doesn't mean he isn't real."

I only shook my head and followed the others into the kitchen. His remark left me speechless, but my first sight upon walking into the large, quite ordinary kitchen changed that. Through a full-glass back wall I could see a real lion in the yard. He was huge, and rather mangy-looking, but he gave a loud roar as he saw us enter the room.

"That's too much," I said, only barely audibly. "What kind of place is this?" I added under my breath.

I backed out of the kitchen and retreated to the living room.

"Mr. LaVey," I interrupted, "I'd like for you to excuse me, please. I'm not feeling too well." I turned to Garnet.

"Mr. Garnet, I think I'd better leave now. I'll be your vampire and witch, but I must be going now."

"Sharon," LaVey's voice was gentle, but his smile was still strange. "You've only just arrived. Won't you please stay? I'm holding services this evening - there will be special secret rites - and I'm sure you would enjoy it. It isn't often that I invite an outside guest to these rites."

I looked right into his eyes momentarily, but I could't withstand his gaze. "No thank you, Mr. LaVey. I hope you won't be offended, but I was raised to worship God, not the devil. I must leave now."

Garnet apparently recognized the urgency and decided against getting tough with me. "Okay, Sharon, you take the car and we'll get a cab later on."

He walked me to the door and out to the car. "Will you be all right?"

"Yes." I stopped beside the car. "I'm sorry, Mr Garnet, but my imagination must have been working overtime. I had visions of somehow being sacrificed and all that. Besides, I'm tired and need to go to bed early tonight." Looking back at the scarey, black house, I wasn't sure I'd be able to go through with LaVey's plans, but then again, what other course did I have?

I looked at my two-inch-long false fingernails, painted brilliant red. And my face was something special, as I looked up into the mirror. It was eerie - milky-white, broken by bright red lips that matched the color of the fingernails by seemingly sunken blue-black eyes expertly twisted upward at the outside corners - grotesquely exaggerated cat eyes. Jet black hair framed it all. I was the perfect, sexy vampire, ready for my casket lying at the center of the stage.

Using care because of my fingernails, I reached into my big, black handbag and fished out a pill. Rehearsals had gone well - we were ready for the weirdest show on the strip, but I knew I'd never be able to get into that casket for real without being stoned. I popped the acid tab into my mouth, carefully avoiding any lipstick smears.

As the end of the production neared, I lay inside the casket. I remembered very little of the show. I had shaken several people with the reality of my performance when I had risen from the casket and pointed a long, blood-red fingernail at the audience and marked them as my next victims. Gasps, from both males and females, had sounded all around the club. But as I lay there, I fancied the idea of being dead and still hearing all the sounds around me. I heard everything - the footsteps, the breathing, the sighs in the audience. "But I'm dead," I thought. "It's so pleasant... I'm outside of my dead body... I'm a spirit... I can see and hear everything... I'm dead... But I'm really alive..."

I lay in the casket so long that I missed the curtain call by five minutes. I just didn't want to get out of it.

The audience went wild over the performance. Garnet had himself a hit. I was convinced he had a whole lot more than he realized.

But the night's success spelled trouble later. Gary, my current lover of about three weeks standing, laid quietly in bed as I entered the room. I was still stretched tight from my acid trip and sat down next to him.

"You're awfully quiet, Gary. Is there something the matter?"

"I don't like what's happening to you, Sharon," he blurted out. "This whole thing you're into at the club is crazy. It's changed you. All through the rehearsals I've watched you change."

"I don't understand," I said softly, not wanting to get into a hassle. "I haven't changed."

"Yes, you have," he said sharply. "It's hard to describe. But something's happened to you. When you play your autoharp, for instance, it's creepy. There's a strange sound to it, and when you sing with it, it's like something far out, from somewhere else."

I persisted with my soft approach. "Aw, come on, Gary, you're imagining things. This is just a job. There's nothing to that black magic stuff if you don't believe in it. Relax, babe."

"Please, Sharon, baby, get out of this show. You don't need the money. We can live dealing dope. You don't need this stuff."

Gary was getting to me. And the room started to close in.

"I'm going out for a while, Gary. I'm really wired from the acid I dropped tonight. You go to sleep. I'll be back."

I picked up my harp and walked out into the street, throwing a gray cape over my shoulder. The night was foggy. I walked along quietly for several minutes and then began to strum the harp softly. I tripped out again - and was a little fairy playing my music. I sat down under a window and played softly for the whole neighborhood. Strangely, no one bothered me.

It was dawn when I walked back into the apartment and found a note from Gary. I saw immediately that his things were gone. "Sharon," the note read, "I love you too much to sit and watch you lose yourself to LaVey. Goodbye."

I sat quietly and sadly, strumming my harp and humming.

The show was a smash hit along the strip. Garnet had scored big. But the witches' sabbath, and my total sellout to LSD, marijuana, and hashish, and to sex with virtually any attractive man, landed me in the hospital in four months. I was half dead from gonorrhea and had a complete physical breakdown.

Seems to Me that her rudeness as well as irresponsibility and neurotic behavior landed her in the subsequent predicament she describes.

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