Monthly Archives: February 2017

Whiches

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They stared into the wold that they now knew was shaped like an “X”. But it was a fractal “X”: loops within loops probably. The VW Love Bug would obviously not fit inside. They’d have to walk. Old Mabel checked her plain map once more, looking for changes.

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“It will transform within,” Urch explains patiently “You’ll see. Simple will become complex, trust me. And at the center the record will be heard. We will know. No skipping from ‘Imagine’ to ‘Mind Games’ this time.” He smiled.

Old Mabel spoke her heart. “Before you shrank back into a boy — before your, um, er… ”

“Untimely demise?” offers Urch.

“Yes,” Old Mabel ventures further. “You were a slave.” She thought again of the x-shaped necklace.

“Admittedly difficult to tell,” he said. “We’ll know at the center. Then we can be free of this rotting place.”

“Change into my future lover,” she requests again, needing encouragement before the entrance. “Just for a minute.”

Urch complies, but it didn’t work as well as before. Time fractures were accelerating. The VW disappears behind them. Which was which?

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“After you, I suppose.”

“No, you.”

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Shades

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“You guys really going to climb that thing?” the cartoon voiced Doughy the Doe Eyed Deer asked Old Grey (a.k.a Wheeler) and Snowmanster standing beside her, the former panting a bit and the latter not atall after their climb further into the snowy hills. Both were staring up at 300+ meter high Mount Shade, trying to figure out the best way to reach the top. Fortunately both had come up with the same plan, or the mountain may never have been conquered this day. You see, Old Grey and Snowmanster had been bickering with each other ever since they met up at the ski lodge on top of that spiral structure several days back. Both were certainly powerful beings. Both had seen their fair share of dark and light activities alike in the realm of magic. It’s just that one still saw value in darkness and the other really didn’t. Their discussion lately had centered around Old Grey’s New Island.

—–

“The woods — plural — have shown me all shades of black and white and grey down through the years, Old Grey,” Snowmanster said at one point along their trek up. “I’ve sampled everything. All Santas have been my lovers, friends, enemies. Where I draw the line is *slavery*. Witchcraft and slavery.”

“It’s not slavery if it is consensual,” countered Old Grey, trying to match the the white being stride for stride still but already struggling just a little.

“I understand it is different for avatars,” returns Snowmanster. “We have to do what we have to do to keep attention. I too am a beautiful being underneath all this outer cover. I am also a tree, a robot, a zookeeper, a pedestrian about to cross a heavily trafficked street. I am all of these things and thousands more. You will not be able to keep up with me.”

“I do want to learn more about those woods,” Old Grey says, trying to hide any signs of being even slightly out of breath.

—–

Back to the present and Mount Shade. “Cloudmont,” states Snowmanster. “Just beyond the far peak. Just on the other side. You’ll see. Have you caught your breath yet?”

“Shut up and get going,” is all she said back. They start up, one just behind the other now.

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“Goodbye my old friend… and new friend,” Doughy calls after them. “Careful of the Yeti. It’s mating season.”

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One of these things…

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… is not a tree.

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Topper

Recommended by my friend Veyot, I had already visited the gallery of Karly Twine through Old Grey earlier in the day, but a lingering trace of my avatar’s demonic status ruined the snapshots I took then. So I returned through her late at night. Very late. You see, she was invited by Robot Derak Jones to the New Island Community College faculty dance and stayed until five am cutting the rug. In her younger days she could shake and shimmy for a week solid. Now it was down to mere hours, but more than even the youngest and most fit professors and administrators at the event could handle. In the end she was dancing alone. Typical. I should also add here that the walking cane she favors is only an outfit prop.

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Very beautiful photographs here by Karly (who I also met earlier) — go to Veyot’s tumbler site for more information about the gallery — but Old Grey was admittedly more looking for clues about how to move ahead with the “Collagesity 2016-2017 Winter” storyline. Since the parcel was called Da Vinci Gardens, she was hoping for Mars again; instead Karly’s gallery was set in the midst of a winter wonderland. Still, this structure found outside in the ice and snow seemed to knit the two concepts together.

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Old Grey had seen a variation of it before on her way to spy on Baker Bloch in Martian Jacksboro this past November. The spiral based building sat on a plateau beside an amphitheater of dancing automatons. Old Grey had landmarked the place and returns every once in a while to prance amongst them, sometimes as a ballerina in the Nutcracker. Very limber bones she has, but of course that has more to do with the demon inside than any exercise regiment.

Up she strides around the building’s external spiral path.

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She pauses to take in the view. Snow seems to be getting heavier.

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She reaches out to pet this wildcat (Old Grey has no fear) and the feline disappears (!). Shades of Jorondip and its quantum cat here. This is clearly a magical place.

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Finally she reaches the top. Even the very fit Old Grey is slightly winded by the long trip up.

Well, tempted as she is, Old Grey hasn’t got time for sledding or skiing. She senses someone inside. An ancient nemesis.

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Vicky Diamond? No not you Vicky. But you might come in handy anyway.

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Books. Surely not Professor Jones. She’s just been with him and knows his wheezy ways. He wouldn’t have a hideout so difficult to reach.

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No, there was only one deity who would summon Old Grey to such environs. Well, two maybe. But turns out it was both. Snowmanster and Satan Santa sat next to each other on the couch to her left, eating popcorn and, hmm, sharing frequent, buttery kisses.

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The late Mrs. Squarepants.

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Snowmanster sat on her couch, soaking it all in. Home again… so good. But where was everyone? Spongebob? Snowbob?

After a while the truth began to settle in. She was late. She had missed something. But what? Snowmanster went to the window; stared out at the familiar Rubi Woods. The purple hummingbird below her outside twittered loudly.

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“Meeting Place,” she mutters, staring at the appropriate flat spot of the forest. “That’s where I’ll find out.”

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Hearts 02

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She was back at Cry I. but underwater now. Down to a putter: end of hole.

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This was the night she met Dr. Low with red and blue eyes. Splitsville.

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But first… some lemonade at the conveniently placed Joker’s Wild bar to her left. Old Grey awaits through the Red Door.

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—–

“Guess it’s time for that heart to heart, Old Mabel,” she starts. “Lemonade’s on me tonight. Karl!” she then yells, banging her cane on the bar counter. She waits just a second and bangs again. “Rhoda! Whoever!”

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“Oh it’s you. ‘Bout time. Well… a 24 oz can of Pabst Blue Ribbon for me and the little lady will have a lemonade. Start a tab.”

“I’m 113 years old, *Old* Grey,” the Martian proclaims defiantly. She then glared at Snowbob behind the counter. The last time she saw the hybrid being was in the mystery cabinet or closet or whatever. She didn’t really like what was happening there, but perhaps it was all a dream.

“Yellow is missing,” he said, staring back. “Replaced by green!”

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“He’s right this time, you know,” agreed Old Grey. The Martian now noticed the lemonade already in front of him.

Splitsville.

—–

Snowmanster exits the closet.

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Log in.

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Robot Derak Jones distinctly said this was where the other end of the pipe is, its “far side” as he called it. But there’s a log here instead. He said it was a disguise. “You must use your new eyes,” he implored. “Your New *Island* eyes. This is how things often work here.”

Baker Bloch looks over at the statue of the Great Old One to his right and knows, er, one is related to the other. How’s *that* for new eyes.

Both terminal points of the “pipe” lie at latitude 121 of their respective sims, which are caddycorner to each other. At least at one point along the line, the pipe appears to bend roughly 30 degrees. But that is just assuming we’re dealing with a simple, linear affair. What about the name of the beach here?: Sharp’s Angle. Are there sharper angles within? Is it a complex affair instead, perhaps much more so?

The name given to this log is “[MnM] Forest bed”. Here’s the accompanying description: “Long time ago… She is the guardian of forest… and now, She is the mother of forest…” Could this possibly have something to do with Rubi’s Unch?

—–

Meanwhile, Old Mabel is dreaming again at her Cry Island. Like Baker Bloch, she stands in front of a huge hollow log, one leading to the VWX fairy cottage visited numerous times before. Strangely she’s Old Grey in the dream, Baker’s faux mother who is actually “Wheeler the Complex,” as the Martian has started to call her.

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Old Mabel knows that if she doesn’t figure out what’s going on soon enough, they — Baker Bloch, Wheeler, Karoz and herself — will be forever trapped on this infernal island. She’s visited the downtown and the community college Robot Derak Jones teaches at. Nothing is good here, like rotting fruit. Spells abound. It’s a witch island.

The hummingbird flies off Old Grey’s back and into the tunnel…

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—–

*Meanwhile*… Wheeler is dreaming about falling asleep while waiting for another phone call from Snowbob over what’s actually going on.

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