Mr. Crispy is a character in my Purgatory series. He is a pyromaniac that gets caught in a blaze of his own making and dies. He winds up in Purgatory sporting the scars of his sins. Mr. Crispy is not his real name, but it is the name bestowed upon him by the Purgatorial community after his arrival. His skin is charred black and mottled with shiny swollen areas that constantly seep pus and plasma from eternally fresh wounds. Purgatory’s inhabitants bear the evidence of their sins for all to see and Mr. Crispy will be afflicted with his burns until a higher power sees fit to let him pass. This is a sentiment he begins to doubt as time creeps on and there is no communication or interaction with God. He feels he has surely atoned for any sins out of the agony of his existence alone and is beginning to think there is no place to move on to.
Mr. Crispy, formerly know as…well, you don’t get to know his real name yet, is a young man of undetermined age, however, I see him as being in his early teens. He is a typical teen, aside from a strong desire to burn things, but feels like an outsider because of his affliction. The fact he recognizes it as an affliction means he knows better than to do it, but lacks the self-control to fight the urge. This secret weighs upon him and defines his interaction with his friends; slightly introverted, guarded, and quick to make an excuse to bugger off from group activities. He would much rather spend time alone than with people so he doesn’t have to hide his dark side, his dark friend, as he often thinks of that part of himself.
Fire intrigues him and he has wielded it for so long that he feels in control of it. There was only one time that control slipped from his grasp, but since the fire was contained in his neighbor’s back yard and was extinguished quickly, his illusion of control held. His final battle with his dark friend made him realize how small and inconsequential he was compared to nature, and could have been a therapeutic turning point for him had he won. Tragic situations sometimes have a way of clearing one’s head and changing perspective, but all to often people don’t get the chance to use that realization to enact positive personal change. Maybe part of what makes situations like his so tragic is that the answer shows itself too late to help, like deciding too late the correct course of action to avoid an automotive collision.
His personality does not improve any after reaching Purgatory. He loathes his situation, but is happy he is not in Hell, regardless of how much fire is there. He loathes his neighbors, except for the beautiful but troubled Annabelle, an ex porn-star with whom he is infatuated despite her…shall we say rather noticeable genitals. He is confused about the physics of Purgatory as it seems things are possible there that weren’t when he was alive; more of a dream-like state where his environment can change on a whim, leaving him often ill-prepared for his circumstances. He is stuck in this suburban version of Hell and can find no peace.
Mr. Crispy has discovered a hidden side, a special place where he can go to another dimension, an escape from one Purgatory into another. This second Purgatory is more reminiscent of when he was alive and it draws him incessantly. Spending time between the two realities has caused him to be confused as to which one is real, or if they both are real. His struggles are not only physical, but mental and psychological as well as he fights to figure out reality and reaffirm his sanity. Will he figure out which dimension is real? Is it even possible? Will he learn the truth about where and who he is? Is there a Heaven or Hell? The second reality and the ensuing struggle are introduced in Purgatory: Episode II. Both stories can be accessed by clicking on the pictures below or the hyperlinks in this post. I hope you get to meet Mr. Crispy, he is quite a character and his continued adventures will be chronicled in future episodes. Happy reading.