The Company

"Mad" used to lead a clique called The Company, largely composed of teenage punk drifters heavily into D&D, drugs, kink, loud music, and a wide variety of magickal traditions. The local core of the group was less than twenty, but overall I think it might have been forty nationally (some, as I suggested, drifting in and out of town). A handful of the core members lived in a series of cramped hastily partitioned spaces at an apartment in the East Village. They lived in a fantasy world and mostly freeloaded at people's homes; nevertheless, I made good friendships among them. They were misfits to the utmost degree and proud of it, yet most were decent and loving with a passionate sense of community and personal loyalty.

My recollection is that the atmosphere was very soap opera-ish, relationships transient, jobs scarce, altered states manifold, and reality extremely off kilter. A large number were pretty much psychotic or borderline, a few into heroin, and one person a mugger by profession. Drama was the elemental particle from which their reality was constructed, and so, I was entranced.

Madison, as leader of the clique, encouraged a seperation from the rest of society by playing people against each other; seducing, cuckolding and later discarding most of the group members, lying frequently and recruiting niave defenders, promoting the constant usage of drugs to disorient and distract, developing a millenarian doomsday paradigm to encourage paranoia and mistrust of outsiders and "squares", and many other control techniques to focus everyone's attention and time on Mad's goodwill. She claimed to the a Prophetess, without whose revelations none could survive the coming End Times.

It took me a long time to percieve the extremely abusive subtext to the goings-on because of the frenetic quality of the physical and mental space they inhabited. Perhaps I didn't take what was going on as seriously as I should have. When I did, and complained for the sake of those being hurt-- I was determined to be a threat to the abuser (Madison) and became a persona non grata. Because of the nature of the personal ties between these people, even the victims I sought to protect were turned against me, and the situation ended tragically.

Some time later these abuses tore the group apart utterly, and the remaining faithful, along with some new faces, became what is now called the Us Collective. Most of the former Company members are uninterested in contact with the occult world in any fashion, being burnt out and rendered suspicious. Others are unwilling to risk persecution by Us Collective, as they are well aware that Madison tends to attempt to make her public critics her next immediate targets.