Thursday, September 29, 2011

The biggest shoe

Had to try. Didn't expect this outcome. Had to try though. Didn't want her to be another...
Not important. (EN: Hello Ben!)
Nothing I can do about that now. I tried.
On to the past two days. They have been... odd (EN: I prefer interesting, but odd is less crazy)
So let's roll back to the other night to start. It's going to be difficult enough dealing with yesterday without a decent run-up to it at this point.
Music really helps. I'd settle for white noise at this point, but it's too easy to block out and actually, I think it's setting something off in my head. So music it is.
The problem is, I have idle hands, and I'm rather used to cooking for myself. I wanted to make pancakes, but we needed to get August out of the kitchen. Or you know, just tie him up.
(EN: Sorry about pancake thing August, nice to see you're following the blog though)
I got Opal to distract August, and dragged him into a chair while he was distracted, and then tied him to it. In hindsight, this was not the smartest idea. I'm certain, based on my reactions that I wasn't at all in my right mind. It happens. I wanted pancakes.
"STOPSTOPWHATAREYOUDOING!" (EN: August looks, fights and screams like a girl.)
"Making pancakes!"
Opal was (understandably) alarmed at this point, between the screaming and the tying people up. August on the other hand, reacted a little differently. (EN: The good part is coming up)
"Pancakes, they're delicious." I say as one of the light fixtures bursts.
"We felt guilty cause you were doing all the work-" Opal continues on
"Well, she felt guilt, I was bored." The room goes black.
Spencer's standing in the doorway to the kitchen, looking for all the world like he's trying to recreate the lobby scene from the Matrix, only without a shirt and wearing the rattiest pair of jeans I've ever seen. It's funny what you remember. He's also grinning.
"What in hell's name do you think you're doing?"
"Making pancakes"
Opal starts screaming again "DON'T SHOOT!"
August is relieved as Spencer takes another step into the room.
"you two made August scream"
"Well, I did."
"Yeah, he did!" (EN: Opal, why would you say that? Thanks for throwing me under the bus)
"Do you want pancakes?" I start rummaging through one of the cupboards looking for the gear to make pancakes with it.
"Not smart" Spencer walks out "Holler if Writer or Valtiel shows up. I want pancakes once they're done." (EN: Thanks for not shooting anyone Fitz)
He's left August behind, much to August's dismay.
"IS SOMEONE GOING TO UNTIE ME?"
"No"
August resigns himself to his fate apparently. "Fine. You two. Vanilla extracts in the third cupboard from the stove."(EN: Did I mention he was wearing a frilly apron?)
"Thank you August" apparently August was having none of that.
"If it'd make you feel better I'm sure the apron would work as a gag"
Opal protests this and August well... (EN: Hitting us with a spoon wasn't needed Opal)
"Touch the apron and I can guarantee you'll leave this House with your other hand in pieces".
Did I mention he was smiling? (EN: August is a scary person.)
"Opal can you go fetch the mason jar of maple syrup from my van?"
"Alright?" There's a sing-song quality to August's voice (EN: I mean it. Scary person.)
Opal is (understandably) confused. That is easily solved.
"Schnell schnell Opal!" (EN: German is a wonderful language.)
I set to work finding the ingredients for the pancakes, alarming August as I disrupt the neatness of several kitchen cupboards. (EN: Who keeps guns in a kitchen cupboard anyways?)
August thrashes around the whole time.
"You're only going to hurt yourself like that August, the ropes will get tighter and you'll cut of circulation to your hands and then it's going to hurt.
We don't need more hand cripples."
I don't remember much of the rest of the night. The pancakes were fantastic, at some point August managed to get out of the chair and started to undo the damage I'd done. I'm honestly a little surprised about that (the getting untied bit). (EN: I'm usually quite good at it.)
Opal made eggs (EN: They weren't especially good.)
At some point, Todd showed up, thought we were hallucinations. He's a little odd.
Went to sleep later.

The next day was much the same. Music, solitaire. I'm assuming Fitz is recovering from the tangle with Writer. (EN:Which means we could probably get out of here tomorrow)
We went and knocked on Opal's door at the House last night, with a plate of pizza
(EN: Thought I would have to bribe my way in.)
The pizza turned out to be unnecessary, and Opal invited me in. The subject I came to discuss was the previous post. You know the one. I'd hoped to bring August along, but he was busy with Elaine.
For the record? I've never been the best at consoling people. I'm rubbish with funerals for instance.
To say that the subsequent "discussion" didn't go well would be a gross understatement.
(EN: To say it wasn't as successful as we hoped would be the truth)
Background!
Opal used the Path. Not... wise. That's how she got to Vermont so quickly. I'm sure that's how she left once she got out of the House. (EN: Should have tied her up.)
Which is.... GOD IT IS THE STUPIDEST THING YOU COULD EVER DO. NO. NO. THE PATH IS NOT SOMETHING THAT ANYONE SHOULD USE. (EN:REALLY DON'T DO IT)
You now know why the first thing I did upon meeting Opal was shake her.
I'm not sure just what the Path does to people. Spencer said it was something to do with a frequency, affects the inner ear among other things. I'm staying the hell away from it.

The subsequent discussion wasn't pleasant. Mostly because Opal broke down in the middle of it. She thought the walls were talking to her (EN: It took ten minutes to write that. Kind of sad.)
More than a little suicidal I think was our Opal. Apparently the bastard with the shit eating grin "won't let her die"
In the middle of this, I have an idea. It's a very stupid idea.
As I go out the door to fetch a gun, who should I find there but Spencer.
He punched me. (EN: Did you have to punch us that hard?)
Let me repeat that. Spencer punched me.
I sort of sat there for a minute and then went to fetch some ice.

You know that scene in Fight Club? Where Tyler and the Narrator mug the asian fellow to make him appreciate his life? Similar principle. Make someone decide whether or not they want to live by sticking a gun in their face.
Spencer keeps guns in the kitchen. (EN: Funny what you remember)
I unload the gun, stick it down the back of my pants and grab some ice for the spot I was punched. That's going to bruise nicely.
I walk back into the room, pull the gun on Opal. This? This was the bad idea. Since I wouldn't know if Spencer would know if the gun was loaded or not.
I'm not going to write out the rest.
It ended with me getting slapped by Opal. (EN: If I find out you let her go Fitz?)
Probably a bad idea. (EN: I stand by our initial idea as being brilliant)
And now she's gone. (EN: No more Jessicas.)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Another HouseGuest?

Opal got here today.
Let's say that again, for the hard of hearing.
OPAL IS HERE (EN: This should probably be surprising. It isn't.)
The other day, Opal was in North Dakota. Now, I'm no cartographer, but North Dakota? IS A RATHER LONG WAY AWAY FROM THIS HOUSE.
(EN: That's House, the all caps make it tricky to tell)
On the other hand, I've had better sleep over the past two nights than I've had in the past two months. Am I clear-headed? Remarkably, YES. (EN: Sleep and August's cooking didn't hurt)
Am I a little angry with Opal? Not surprisingly... yes. (EN: Really just a little.)
But enough of the preamble! Let's get to the review.
I've spent fourteen hours sleeping. This is a miracle, since I've gotten four hours at a stretch and this has been filled with- you should already know at this point. (EN: Trees)
My day has had a fixed routine for a while. Get up, whenever. Turn on a bit of music, check blogs. Yesterday I found two lovely gems waiting for me.
This comment from Opal
And this later post on her blog.

So first question.
How the hell did Opal know where I was going? (EN: I'm assuming he told her)
Second question:
How did Opal get to Vermont so quickly? (EN: The answer is, in the most insane way possible)

I found out the answer to the second question a little later.
I'm not sure if I should write it down here. We'll see if Opal writes that one on her own.

I couldn't say when Opal got to the House.
The earlier parts of the day I'd spent sleeping, stealing bits of food from the kitchen when no one was looking (which I would later discover was wise), listening to classical music and rereading blogs. (yes, Spencer, there was a reason). At some point, I went out to the table by the kitchen with a pack of cards and started to play solitaire.

I have spent many hours killing time by playing solitaire. So I sort of lost track of when it was.
(EN: I really have. The problem is the aces tend to wind up shuffled wrong. It takes a few tries)
"Nemo, good evening. I didn't see you around earlier." August... smiles a lot I think. It takes some getting used to.
This was followed by a "Nemo?"
And of course there's this mousy little stick of a girl with him. "August, is that who I think it is?"
"Yes"
Cue about a minute of absolutely awkward first encounters. Normally, I would glaze over this section. There's nothing interesting, frankly it's sort of embarrassing in hindsight. But since Opal is going to read this at some point.
(EN: If she doesn't, I'll be surprised.)
"WORDS DO NOT DESCRIBE HOW STUPID THAT WAS"
(EN: They really don't)
Moving on.
I asked August what he and Opal were doing, to which August responded with a list of vague, semi-specific things he was going to do, and then suggested food.
I'm not going to turn down food. Especially since I haven't eaten anything terribly substantive since pizza earlier the previous morning. The fast food the previous night didn't count.
Pasta sounded good. Opal and I offered to help.
Apparently August has a code of some sort as to how the kitchen is run. This includes that under no conditions do guests cook. (EN: We'll see how long that lasts)
In fact, I would go so far as to say he was vehement over the point. No one is to cook but August.
The pasta was good though.

(August, I'm making you a sign, to hang somewhere in the kitchen. For the sake of future guests. It will read "There is only ONE cook in this House. If you are reading this, it isn't you.")

Room and board

Okay. So time to put the puzzle pieces together. Well, the immediately important ones.
So what happened after this but before these two?

Well. I'll admit, I've never been the best about obeying the law. Quod est necessarium est licitum
That which is necessary is legal. So I drove from Ottawa to Montreal, in about half the time it should have taken. There were speed limits broken. I stopped near a hotel in montreal to pillage an internet signal, which is when the second post was made.
The end of Spencer's post is probably a fairly accurate depiction. Synchronicity, for those unaware is essentially the principle that events and co-incidences can have meaning despite being seemingly unrelated at first glance.
For instance, the fact that I should stop in front of the same alleyway to use the same internet signal as Spencer when he is incapable of travel and I don't have a place to stay. I prefer serendipity, or even providential myself.

I'm not going to get into how we got across the border south of Montreal. The less said about that, the better. Not that I remember much anyways. I kept expecting someone to stop us, but we got through alright. If I were religious at all, I would be thanking a god in some capacity. I kept driving and ignoring the speed limit. Stopped a few times to give my hand a rest. I think I forgot to mention the state of my hand. The left one is currently enjoying a fractured thumb and index finger. I'd splinted it with a few bits of pencil, and then wrapped my hand up in gauze and duct tape to keep it immobilized. It sort of felt like it was filled with bits of glass and then covered in a mitten filled with glue.
But enough of that. There's a surprising number of vaguely british names in Vermont, and every once in a while we'd do something like this. Pull off the highway. Fast food. Stop for all of a minute. Eat. Keep driving over the speed limit with one hand.

At some point during the night, we arrived at the House. Yes, the capital letter is required. It's the sort of thing that insists on its status as a proper noun. Yes, it was the same night. Or possibly the morning after. My sense of time was a little... (and I apologize) wibbley-wobbley.

The House is... I think vast would be the right word. In the same way that something like a lake could seem very ordinary when you look at the surface, and seem to be the size of an ocean once you actually stick your head under the surface.

"You live in a madhouse" I'll admit, I don't know if we spoke at all during the drive from Montreal. This was the first thing that came to mind upon actually seeing the House.
"MadHouse" Spencer corrected me from the passenger seat. Again with the capital letters.

"We didn't drive this far to have you die in your own driveway Spencer." I said "Should I go get someone or..." I look at Spencer. "I don't think I could carry you."

He insists he can make it up to the front door. And so we exit the van, and enter the House. August is in the entrance.
When Opal describes August as "Mr. Mom" she's being relatively accurate. August (and it's sometimes hard to remember that the correct gender for August is male) was all over Spencer like a mother hen.
"Christ you look horrible! Did Writer..."
And then I get noticed. Which is always an uncomortable sensation. "Nemo?"
Awkward introductions are always the best introductions. It tends to be uphill from there.
Of course, I'd never seen August, but the descriptions I had and the way he was paying attention to Spencer sort of suggested identity in and of itself.
(Editors Note: I was sleep-addled and starving. It doesn't mean that my brain wasn't working.)
"Ah. August... right?"
(EN: So I was sleep-addled and starving. Also my hand hurt.)
Of course, I'm not the one trying to keep his insides from becoming outsides. August shouts "DOC!" and then turns to me. "Nice to meet you, when did you last eat or sleep?"
There's a brief sort of back and forth of yelling, and a some point Steele joins in and suggests that everyone shout at each other in the same room. Now, I'll admit, I wasn't sure which day it was at this point, and I sort of stopped feeling hungry after a bit.
(EN: I'm probably characterizing my own thoughts as much more coherent than they actually were. Fair warning)
"What day is it?"
Steele showed up, look about ready to strangle someone and started cracking-wise when he discovered the House's new guests.
(EN: Admittedly, humour was sort of lost on me at this point. You'll see in a bit)
He spouted off something about Sydney, and offered a hand and there might have been a comment about swimming. None of it really made sense. Yes, his one hand does look like someone decided it would be more functional if you put it through a blender.
August asks Steele to move Doc downstairs, and tells me it's Sunday and that things will happen after the stuff with Spencer is sorted.

The next few minutes are sort of a blur, so I hope no one minds if I paraphrase grossly.
August kept mothering everyone and generally being... let's go with organized. Sane doesn't quite seem like the right word.
Steele was sent off to fetch Doc and Spencer and I sort of stood around like lackwits.
"It's the twenty-fifth" August says and directs me to the kitchen. The kitchen and the living room are in an odd sort of place. In that they're not on the first floor.
It feels strange to be in a house where there are other people. Which might be why I reacted with such surprise when I found August had followed me up to the kitchen.
"There's pasta, some roast beef but you'll need to reheat that. Todd probably has some pizza tucked away in there too."
I jumped a little. Okay, I jumped quite a bit. But again, it was only August.
(EN: It's going to take a while to get used to other people again)
There was pizza in the fridge, stale, fridge marinated. In short, at the perfect point within the life-cycle of a pizza to be reheated in a microwave. Still tastes okay cold, but it could use some heat.
"Is there a microwave" the last part of the sentence is cut off by the sounds of Spencer screaming from the foyer. The sounds alone are enough to make you cringe.
August sort of hesitated in answering "I'd really rather you use the oven." Huh... what's wrong with the microwave? (EN: The microwave is a horrible, horrible thing.)
I keep eating the pizza anyways.
"Coffee?" August has apparently made some. "I don't drink coffee"
(EN: It's much too bitter, no matter how much sugar you put in it. I prefer tea.)
August eventually indicates the microwave, but by this point, my brain has sort of assembled an idea that maybe the microwave does horrible things to food? At this point, I jump again.
"What's going on, and who's that guy"
Dear reader, Sam is creepy. This is all.
My mind flashes back to the lobby of an office building in Toronto, my hands try to catch the pizza as it flies up into the air and my frayed nerves decide that trying to launch my skeleton about a foot into the air vertically without accompanying viscera is a good idea.
It takes a minute to calm down before I can answer
"Me? Ah... No one." (EN: Strictly speaking? Entirely true.)
I seem to have frightened Sam by flipping out. She apologies for scaring me.
(EN: Remember what I said about a sense of humour? This)
"Scare? Ha!" The laugh continues for a while. I don't think I've actually laughed much for a while. But this sounds... a little sick and twisted to be honest. By the time I need to catch my breath, August has introduced us and inquired as to where someone named "Matilda" is.
(EN: Matilda isn't a someone. Matilda is a creepy doll. Sam drags it around everywhere)
Steele joins us in the kitchen not long afterwards. At this point, I'm obsessively eating the pizza to keep myself from laughing. I'm not going to describe what he tried to make, only that it was an abomination against both ethyl alcohol and the world at large.
The laughter briefly seems to infect August.
"Are you alright?"
Apparently August doesn't know.
A short laugh. "I think so."
Someone yells from downstairs "ANYONE ELSE NEED MY ASSISTANCE"
"Are you sure, should we get you set up somewhere?"
"Actually, I think, if it'd be okay, I'd like to see Doc"
Now that I've dealt with food, I'm a little worried about my hand.
August relays this via the most advanced means (shouting some more) to the foyer, and we are informed by similar means that we'll have to go to the Doctor, since a housecall seems out of the question.
"Sam would you mind helping me get this coat off, I'm a little shorthanded." I hadn't bothered putting my hand in the one sleeve of the coat. More manic laughter here.
(EN: My own recollection of this is actually a tad worrying. Severely unhinged doesn't begin to cover it.)
The laughing has alarmed Sam a little. Well probably more than a little. I'm something of a raving lunatic. The coat removed, I thank Sam and we go down stairs.
I don't remember much of the preamble here. I might have made another hand pun. And laughed a bit more.
(EN: I did, and I did apparently. Disturbed doesn't begin to cover it)
Doc removes my own hackjob handiwork and examines the damage. There may have been anaesthetic involved at some point. I'm not sure. Just the thumb and finger injured. Well, fractured. Splints for those two and ice for the hand.
There's a little more bantering, Doc asks if I want anything for the pain. A look at Steele says that drugs are not the way to go. Some ice and a few hours of sleep and I should be ready to get back on the road.
(EN: I'm leaving the next bit out.)
I fetch some things from the van, and get my self settled in a room upstairs. And I got some sleep.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Obituary

Jessica Mathers

Born April 25, 1991
Died September 25, 2011

That's not exactly right. I don't know when Jessica died. But that's when I killed the thing that looked like her.
This is the part where I suppose I should tell you who Jessica was. But that's a little too close to home. There's too much of my own history in there to manage anything reasonable.
So instead, I'm going to tell you how I felt about her.

Jessica was magnificent. She had more grace in any limb you care to name then I had in my entire body.
She was in theatre, but she wanted to work with props and set. I don't know why. She had the talent for the stage. Was she shy or- off topic. She looks... looked, gorgeous. Red hair. She wore it braided. I only ever saw her hair loose a few times. It looked like her head was on- it was gorgeous. I never understood why she braided it either.
I always did have a thing for red hair.
But it wasn't just physical. She had a smile that would brighten up a room in an instant. She is the only woman I'd ever met who could quote Monty Python well. She had this wonderful voice. Cracked jokes, sang, whistled, she gave people hugs. That was one of the best things.
She was a brilliant, brilliant woman. Costuming, make-up, props. She taught me those.
It's my fault she's dead now.
I suppose it's a poor thank-you to have killed her.

I suppose you could say we obsessed over her. A romantic might say he loved her. I'm not sure.
It was complicated. Horribly so. I loved every minute of it. we-I never told her.

She was this ray of sunshine.
And then she was a proxy.
And then she burned.
I suppose it was my fault.
I think I'm the last one now.
I'm almost certain of it.

Obituary

Michael Johannes
Born December 17 1991
Died September 25, 2011

Michael Johannes wanted to be a journalist. He had a flair for the theatrical though. Long coats, fedoras, pencil behind the ear, notepad always at the ready. Had a decent hand at a camera.
Michael had some serious anxiety problems though. It's why he never spoke to Jessica until-

Well I don't think that part is important.

I killed him when I stabbed him through the heart.
Whatever was left probably ought to have burned with the house.
No One was left, and No One drove away.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Regret

I just killed two proxies. No. That's not right. I just killed two people.

It's all a mess... I killed Jessica. I can't... GET IT THE FUCK OUT OF MY HEAD.

Calm. Focus.
Start from the beginning.

I'd packed everything up. Big van. Courier van, tall and narrow. Space to sleep in the back. Space for my books. Doorbell. Knock on the door. I was distracted. Wasn't thinking straight. Too relaxed. Was talking. With Opal.
Another knock on the door. I go for the door and hear a window break. The door opens.
I'm on the floor.
I'm suddenly on my back on the floor. Trouble breathing. Something has knocked me over.
It takes a moment to realize.
Danger.

Proxies

They're in my house. They are in my house. Theyreinmyhouse
GET OUT.
Rage. Unfamiliar. It's a hot emotion. I'd forgotten those.
Stumble to my feet. Still hard to breathe. This is my place. You don't belong here.
Rage. Let it out.
A face.
KICK IT.
Stagger to the kitchen. Need a weapon. Knife.
Turn around, proxy. Back on his feet. Knife.
Rage. Let it out.
A proxy.
STAB IT.
Blood is warm. No time to worry about cleaning myself up. Noises upstairs.
Get back upstairs. Proxy in my room. No. No not here. Not her. Not now.
NOT HER.
Jessica.
Jessica.
JessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessicaJessica
Hair. Red hair. Always did have a thing for red heads. Inhale, try to smell her.
I thought she was dead. Why is she here? What is she doing here?
I start to speak.
She turns around.
Dead, glassy eyes. Not her. Not her.
NOT HER.
A proxy.
RAGE. PAIN.
Thrown to the ground. Still have it. Knife.
PAIN. MAKE IT STOP
Foot on my hand. Drop the knife.
PAIN. GUILT.
Why did it have to be her? Anyone but her. Pain. My hand. Crushed, broken.
She reaches for the knife.
NO.
She reaches for the knife. I reach for the knife.
I don't want to die.
I grab the knife again. It's already wet with blood. A little more can't hurt.
Stabbed her leg.
Not her. Not Jessica. Never was Jessica. Proxy wearing her face.
Not on my hand anymore. Keep going. Stand up.
RAGE. LET IT OUT
You can't just lie here and wait for them kill you.
SO STAND UP.STAND UP DAMN YOU.
Stagger to my feet. Everything feels shaky. Except the knife.
The knife is still there. And the thing wearing her face.

rage cold imposter deceiver

kill it


I confess, I don't remember much of what has happened after. When I came to my senses, the proxy was dead. It was... messy. There are apparently six quarts of blood in the human body. It seemed like so much more.
I wandered the house in a daze. The proxy who I'd stabbed with the knife was sprawled on the kitchen floor. The order of events here is a little fuzzy. I closed the front door at some point. I realized I was still holding the knife. So much blood. I threw it somewhere I think. Washed the blood from my hands and face and. So much blood. Cleaned myself up. Threw on another set of clothes.
There was a canister of gasoline, in the garage. I'd meant to pack it, but it would do for this.
The blood soaked rags made good fire-lighters. I took some scissors to her hair. It was braided just like...
Tied it off at either end with some elastics.
And then I set the house on fire. The place reeked of gasoline by the time I was finished. I'll need to get some more.

I put on some AC/DC and drove away. I'm sure you'd approve Spencer. I don't know where I'll go now. Can't go back home. South it is.

There's a storm coming.
Driving now.
Sort of have to.
Can't... won't... don't want to talk about it right now.
Not dead. Not yet.
Don't know where yet.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

I'm an idiot.
I think I've said that enough times.
This has been, at best, a temporary respite from the real problem.

I've got clarity again. I've got a plan. And fuck me, I'm going to need help once this is through with.

Not to alarm or anything. I haven't gone off the deep end again.

I've got letters to write.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Finally

Rain.
No. Not rain.

Thunderstorm.

Finally knocked the humidity out of the air.

Lightning walking about with hollow thunderous footsteps.

Downpour. Wind.
Like the breath of a giant.

It makes the trees shudder, leaves blown around, branches creaking in the gale.
Even trees are afraid of the storm.

Lightning again, fire from the air, so hot that the sudden contraction of the air afterwards is like the clap of two massive hands. The hands of a giant.

Rain drops on a tin roof. They sound like laughter.
Children, laughing.

Seems like it'll be a good night.

Fire

When you're a child, your parents always tell you not to play with fire, or you'll get burned.
And most children ignore them once and manage to burn themselves a little, and then they're satisfied.

But some children don't. Those children never get burned until they've made a much larger fire thn they can handle. And then it burns them all up.

Fire has always fascinated me. It's a beautiful piece of nature, and it has so much potential.
Create and destroy. Heal and harm. Warm or burn. Run the engine of a van, or burn down the world.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

I have a plan

Mostly a note for the sake of Opal, who keeps pestering me.

I have a plan. I am beginning to work on this. I am not telling you what the plan is because the Rule of the Unspoken Plan is a clear and present help in times of danger.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

⊗ne m⊗re step d⊗wn the Path

Facilis descensus Avern⊗;
N⊗ctes atque dies patet atri ianua Ditis;
Sed rev⊗care gradum superasque evadere ad auras,
H⊗c ⊗pus, hic lab⊗r est

The gates of hell are ⊗pen, night and day
Sm⊗⊗th the descent and easy the way
But t⊗ return, and view the cheerful skies,
In this the task and mighty lab⊗r lies.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Running

Running now.
Don't know where yet. I think I have everything. Just need to throw laptop in the bag and then I'm gone.
Like one that on a lonesome road
Doth walk in fear and dread,
And having once turned round walks on,
And turns no more his head;
Because he knows, a frightful fiend
Doth close behind him tread.




Sunday, September 18, 2011

Killing time

So I've got nothing better to do, I figure there's worse ways to pass the time than in correspondence.

Write To Me

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Drinks

I went out "drinking" with Spencer the other night. Discussion was had.
It's been pissing down here for the past few days, and that night wasn't any different. I'd given Spencer a meeting place.

It may surprise some to learn that I don't like surprises, and this was no exception. I'd show upa little while before. And I was waiting for Spencer to arrive. Thunder, lightning, window, torrential rain, the works.

Spencer looked like walking death. You might think this is exaggeration, but I'd be willing to guess he hadn't slept in a fortnight, and that was the least alarming part of his condition. I told him as much.
"If you're saying that, I'm going to believe it."
We went to a pub, we got to talking. I don't drink myself, but pub fish and chips are quite good.

Out of self-protection since I don't want to transcribe my half of that conversation, and politeness, since I'd rather not transcribe his half alone, I'm going to summarize it.

We discussed Raven, for starters. Spencer has been getting emails from Raven, or Corwin, assuming they're the same person. Steele and August went to deliver a package from Raven to Opal. More on that later perhaps. Spencer was quite paranoid. Actually abominably paranoid.

So, for those of you who don't know, dear Spencer used to work for the other side. Went by Teller, he had a partner, bastard by the name of Writer. It didn't take much reading between the lines to know that someone had broken Jake out of the Loop he'd been in. Spencer apparently put this "Writer" character into a loop, and he broke out. It's not a terrible leap in logic to assume that Writer broke Jake out as well. He's been dogging Spencer, like some sort of abominable heckler with a knife.

We swapped backstories, for a bit. No, you don't get mine. I'll say this, the man has issues. I'm not a psychologist, but I'd certainly say survivor's guilt in there somewhere.

After that we sort of went our separate ways. I seem to remember someone saying that just about all of us are in deep need of psychiatric help. Well it's true. We don't get to talk to people all that much.

Now, I have a bottle of Bailey's and several mugs of hot chocolate waiting for me. See if that helps sleeping at all.

I've left documents and instructions with Spencer in case something happens to me.
There's only two kinds of paranoia after all.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Returning to madness

'But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
'Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: 'we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'
'How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
'You must be,' said the Cat, 'or you wouldn't have come here.'


That post was in the drafts when I came to. Nothing tripped. None of the tests. No. Stop. Focus.
Remember how the story goes. Start at the beginning. Where is it? Where does the story start?
Of course. The recording. I remember it. Waking up. Sleep was restful. Incredibly so. I was... alarmed. Shouldn't have slept that long. Much too long. But there weren't any dreams I could remember. But no signs of any wandering about. No signs. None of my tests, none of the logs. No indicator of anything wrong. There was a thunderclap, lightning out the window, the rush of air before the rain falls. And then... petrichor. The smell of dirt after rain. Nothing to show for the lost time except numbers on a clock and a pleasant smell.

So I'm fine. No need to worry.

Hamlet. Hamlet played mad so that no one would realize he was absurdly sane, plotting revenge. Reverse Hamlet? Play sane so that no one realizes you're completely mad.
Maybe some of it will stick.

Direct transcription, audio recording

Apologies, transliteration and transcription are not my strong suit.

N: It's ah... fuck, what the hell sort of time is it
[silence, interspersed with sounds of things moving about]
N: FUCK. It's two in the morning. What sort of time is two in the morning.
N: September 12.
N: Time [pause] Time is 2:15 ante meridian. Sleep lasted [pause] five hours. FIVE.
[silence]
N: I shouldn't have slept that long. nonononononono, I shouldn't have slept that long and wake up normally. Thereweren'tanytrees.
[further cursing, shuffling followed by a loud bang]
N: FUCK! fuckfuckfuckfuck. Door's locked, no marks on my face, none on my arms.
[hard to discern, believe correct transcription follows]
N: Nothing [indistinct muttering] THIS IS RIDICULOUS!
[silence, several minutes, sound of wings flapping appears at several points, source unclear]
N: Storm is coming
[Recording ends]

---Corwin

Monday, September 12, 2011

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There is no cause for alarm
Normal transmission will resume shortly


Please Stay Tuned

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Gone North

Change of location, change of scenery, change of address.
I finish unpacking, cook myself some food, turn on the computer.
AND THEN I FIND THAT EVERYONE HAS GONE MAD AS WELL AND THEY'RE SQUABBLING LIKE CHILDREN.

You're all very lucky that I'm north of the border, or there'd be a lot more shouting.

In retrospect this needs explaining.
So, Spencer and Elaine and Steele have gone crazy. Crazier. Doc is still pretty okay.
Elaine is threatening Steele, Doc has gotten kicked out of the basement which is where the medical supplies are (presumably) and they've locked up a rogue proxy. BRILLIANT. Absolutely fanfuckingtastic.
And the proxy is Morningstar and Jake is apparently running around being dumbshit and making cryptic threats.
Oh. That's a nice idea.

I've just realized. I'm an utter bastard.
And it works.

None of you can see it now, but I'm grinning like a lunatic.
So, like me.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The big picture.
Cartier Bresson had what he called "the decisive moment". It's a moment that happens, and then it's gone. The metaphorical "window of opportunity". Bresson was talking about a once in a lifetime photograph, but it applies here too.

The decisive moment.
Spencer told me... well damn, it couldn't have been more than a month ago but it feels like it's been so long. Off topic.
Spencer told me there were three proxies following me.
Let's look at the replay shall we?
Proxy 1: Tripped and fell onto the subway line in front of an oncoming train trying to rush me.
Proxy 2: Tripped in my backyard, chased me down with a knife I dropped and then got tackled down a hill, had the wind knocked out of him and beat up.

What do these two events have in common? Dumb luck. Which is why I'm writing this in an unfortunate state. Proxy 3.

Let me tell you about #3. Veterans and the Genre Savvy may leave the classroom at this point, since they should already be familiar with the material.

Proxy #3 was a petite, five-foot-nothing redhead. Intelligent, cute, probably my type if she wasn't a fucking proxy. Here's the problem. She was female, and despite every fibre in your body telling you that this woman is out to get you, society has conditioned some of us with some hesitancy towards hitting women. Which I suppose is good. Just not when they're crazed murderers.

Proxy #3, let's call her Eve, approached me on the bus. I needed to sleep again, but didn't want
to use the pills and didn't want to sleep for too long. The bus is in motion and I never get more than a brief cat nap. Eve struck up a brief conversation, and offered to wake me up when the bus got to my stop.

In retrospect, this should have been my first warning. I could go on about how I was sleep-addled, my senses were dulled and all sorts of excuses. Some might even be believable. The truth is, I wasn't expecting it.

"On a large enough time line, the survival rate for everyone will drop to zero."

Eve sort of shook me awake and escorted me off the bus. This should have been warning two. It was dark, and we weren't anywhere I recognized. Some sort of park. The bus pulled away and she grabbed my backpack, pulled backwards and then kicked me forwards.

History teachers might tell you that the gun changed warfare because it was easy to use. They're probably right. You needed to train someone to use a bow, but you could tell someone how to use a firearm quite quickly. It's really like a spear with a very long reach. Business end goes towards the other guy, hold it forward, shoot.
Simplicity is everything.

The box cutter is what saved me. Not the gun I had in my backpack, but the simple box cutter in my front pocket. Any idiot can stab you.

"The Tall One will see you now."

Students, there is, as I'm almost certain science has taught us, a sort of disconnect between reason and instinct. Between what the conscious mind may be unaware of or even suspect, and what the unconscious mind already knows. There was at least, animal cunning at work here. Not brute force. And whatever luck I'd had before had disappeared with my want for sleep.

I reached for the box cutter in my pocket, retrieved it and was rewarded with a foot on top of my hand for my troubles. I lost my grip on the box cutter reflexively and it was kicked away. And then I got kicked a few times. Ouch. Will avoid getting hit in the future.
As Eve leaned down to pick up the box cutter, I headbutted her, and made a grab for it. I think I slashed her shin. It was enough. Delirious as I was, I made a break for it.

Right into it.

I'm not a pious man, but I pray that I will never have to see it again. It just sort of... coalesced out of the blackness. And nothing prepares you for a nine-foot-tall, faceless, eldritch horror in a suit and tie who for all the world looks like he wants to give you a hug.

So I ran. Brain unhinged, I ran, bowled over and trampled Eve. Mind-numbing fear powering my legs. I ran until my veins ran with battery acid and I felt like I was trying to breathe steam.

I went crazy and lost my knowledge of the spacebar. Somewhere in there, was a moment of perfect clarity that I had the good fortune to record. The eye of the storm. It might event be the truth. I played reversed Hamlet for a while. The madman pretending to be sane. I might even be doing it now. I'd like to think I'm a good liar, and the truth would probably be uninteresting. Incidentally, I think I might have watched Fight Club at some point during my lack of sanity. Good movie. Can't find the disc.

Spencer, I think I have some questions for you.


--The Truth Shall Make Ye Fret

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A brief moment of sanity

At the sound of the tone, I will have been awake and more importantly (arguably) sane (arguably) for three hours.

So, run down the list of the damage.
  • Several cryptic comments and abuse of grammar, apparently posted by myself. (Sorry)
  • An encoded notebook
  • Two of my logs have been tampered with
From what I can tell, I've been out of it since shortly after the last post.
Since it's the sane and paranoid thing to do, I have several methods of keeping track of my lucid moments. Thanks to the unspoken plan, I'm going to avoid mentioning what these are. Suffice it to say that they're all fairly simple and easy to check.
Two of these have been messed with. They're the most obvious and the most complex. The one is missing, the other is the aforementioned encrypted notebook. Both by me.

Right, that's the important bit isn't it. So let's get the messages answered.
Opal! Lovely, sane (arguably) Opal, perhaps consider this an object lesson. Aggy might not be all there. Don't let your guard down. The sleeping pills I've flushed down the drain. I can't actually let myself relax.
Ben, you're a miserable, skeptical bastard and I can't see the comparison to that poor mad and very likely dead girl. Kindly try to avoid antagonizing Opal, I rather enjoy the company.
Walter Reeves Bishop, you're a miserable, treacherous bastard. I try to be polite because as far as I know, you haven't killed anyone directly. But I won't have you spreading your point of view.
That's it.
Spencer Fitzgerald, I tried to think of different words to use to avoid a direction comparison with Walter, but I could only find a few, you're a miserable, conniving bastard Spence, and while those are admirable qualities in some ways, you really need to check yourself.

So answering the big question, since we're not looking at the big question yet. I do appear to be quite sane and in possession of most of my faculties. No, I'm not telling anyone what happened yet. Mostly because I have to sort out my head.
I was well out of it when I was posting. As far as physical harm? My right hand aches like a bitch, my face is scratched up, I've got a black eye and more bruises than I care to count. I'm still in one piece though and I have all my teeth. Also, my glasses which is really the important bit.

Ever looked at one of those magic eye pictures? Or one of the optical illusions? Like the one with the rabbit and the duck? Or the old woman and the young woman. Initially, maybe you can only see the one. But if you tilt your head a little, you can suddenly flip back and forth between both with absolute clarity.
The above was a comparison which, while absolutely nothing like what happened, may presumably aid the understanding of what I'm about to write.
Call it madman's intuition, but I've had a few insights. None of them were pleasant.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Can't sleep. The forest is waiting. There's something living in the trees. It's going to get me. Long arms tall thinfaceless THING that waits in the trees we gave it aname WHY did we give it a name? The forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is waiting the forest is filled with trees the forest is filled with trees the forest is filled with trees the forest is filled with trees the forest is filled with trees the trees are filled with a forest the trees are filled with a forestthe trees are filled with a forestthe trees are filled with a forest the trees are filled with a forest the trees are filled with a forest the trees are filled with a forest its in the trees its in the trees its in the trees its in the trees its in the trees its in the trees its in the trees its in the trees its in the trees the trees are in the forest the forest is my head the trees are in my head its all in my head its all in my head its all in my head.

GET OUTGET OUTGET OUTGET OUTGET OUTGET OUT
stormiscoming

Sunday, September 4, 2011

No choice

If I sleep, I dream about the forest.
If I don't sleep, I black out.
I don't know which one is worse.
Hobson's choice isn't much choice at all.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Screw that noise

No more sleepign pills. Not good for me.
Not doing that again.Ugh.

Long story.
Will explain tomorrow.
Okay. Probably not tomorrow. Will explain at some point in the future, assuming I can type coherently with more than one finger. Excuse me. I need to go punch something and then possibly throw up.