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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