Monthly Archives: June 2017

Destination: Collagesity

She got the call around 9pm on Thursday. He offered to visit with Tronesisia at her cottage the following week to discuss his recent contact with Bendy. Work obligations prevented an earlier meeting. She couldn’t wait. The robot lady took the 2pm passenger line from Hooktip to Lapara, arriving an hour and a half later. They rendezvoused after Peter got off work at 6 in an interesting, narrow elevated park of the partially urban sim.

Peter SoSo told Tronesisia that he and his wife had moved to this location in May, ostensibly because of their jobs. To Tronesisia’s dismay, Peter said Bendy was *not* on the Moon of the Moon, but a place called Muff. However, the robot man had heard the news anyway: Prissy married Peter SoSo while he was away with Fisher! It makes sense species-wise, seeing that they’re both mer-people. But I don’t think surrogate parents Jack and Lily had planned it this way at first. They thought Prissy and Bendy were the ones, and that Peter was destined for a different mission. Patterns shift and change over time. Love is blind, etc., etc.

“He… was shocked,” offered Peter. The merman had gone far in advancing his language skills, but still spoke quite haltingly. “Now… trapped on Muff. He is not good. He is… not soso. So so. He is… in bad… way. He… mentioned *you*.”

Circumstances had suddenly swung a door wide open for Tronesisia and Bendy to be together, but there was a possibility she couldn’t find him. “Will the Collagesity rocketship still get me to him?” Peter didn’t answer immediately. “*Will* it??”

There was only one way to find out. She phones up Mary with all the news. She’s heading to Collagesity. The bridge and anything that happens along the way won’t stop her this time. Mary then phones up Pitch at the PCH Forest church, asks how Wheeler is holding up, then tells him about Tronesisia. Pitch confers with Buster about a plan. Buster will stay with the still ailing Wheeler. Pitch will turn back into Baker Bloch and find Karoz Blogger and Baker Blinker in Chilbo and bring them home. Codes and scripts must be checked and repurposed if needed. By all means, Tronesisia *cannot* become lost in space.

And then something else unexpected happened. Baker Blinker became a land owner once more. Collagesity North is reborn.

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Baumy

It was a most remarkable coincidence. Wheeler changes into a witch on Wednesday and is taken to a church on the western edge of the PCH forest to recuperate from a nasty accident with a Halloween tree, and the very next day a witch’s cottage appears on the far eastern side of this same woodland. George understood it to be his new temporary home, an upgrade from the Castle Tower. Duncan Avocado had explained to him that there was more than one Orange, and that the second who had assumed control by treachery was even worse than the first (Nova). The boy would have to stay in the holding forest a while longer. Was Mary even going to be his new mother? He’d already chosen a first name appropriate for the situation. There was the whole tentacled cluster of synchronicities surrounding the anticipated event. The Monster some called it. Others: Baby Monster. Whatever, it had many arms and it was large. It might even be tamed down into a dragon symbol in later times. Which could be earlier times. George was already a bit alive and dead at once. Wheeler Wilson moved forwards and backwards together. “Fo fo fo,” chants Malone from the Chasm Deep. Titusville.

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Newbie

On the main Bermingham beach, Orange Nova ponders dying and being so stupid about the last days of his physical existence. A boy walks up and stares at the back of the ghost white man-shark sitting on the other side of a rock, listening to him ranting on. George again.

He eavesdrops for quite a while, attempting to piece together the bare-bones story of the newcomer. George understands that he had his own realm, his kingdom, and somehow lost it through treachery. The word “bludgeoned” came up several times, always with forced pronunciation. Surprise attack in the night. It rang a bell for the lad. Also: something about cherry trees.

The boy introduces himself by answering a question the creature had just asked himself. “The place is called Bermingham, mister. The greater half of Muff and Bermingham. Not to be confused with Mutt and Jeff. That’s just Muff again.” He walks up to Orange Nova and, without fear, sits down beside the huge creature.

“At least I can feel the ground over here. The sand. Water? Let me test it.” Orange rises up and wades into the sea before him, but runs into some kind of invisible barrier about 15 feet out. He tries and tries to walk through it.

“No use, mister. That’s the end of *this* realm. Realm of Bermingham.” The boy waits for a logical response but still gets none. He begins to understand that this man-shark might be a little slow as he watches him continue attempting to break through an impenetrable barrier. Not that he judges — just an observation. “You might as well stop,” he repeats. “You’ll never get past it. Come on up to the shore here with me. Talk to me. Tell me who you are and a little about yourself.” Yes, the kid was much wiser than the grown-up in this case. He was use to being a counselor for the confused.

“You say there’s no use in keeping trying?” Orange Nova repeats back.

“No,” says George patiently. The creature finally turns around and waddles back to shore.

They sit together in silence for a time. Then Orange Nova began. “I was killed. Treachery. I was owner of my own realm, or close to it. Orange. My name is Orange Nova. I am one of the Novas they use to call super. You probably have heard of me.”

“No,” lies George. He knows who this is now. “It could be that you’re just famous in your *own* realm, not here. It could be,” he continued slyly,” that no one will know you here atall. There’s a good chance.”

“That wouldn’t be good. I rule through power and respect. If no one knows me — if I’m a nobody — then I’m nothing. I have zilch.”

“Not true,” responds the child. “You have yourself and your own consciousness and that’s always present. You are yourself here.”

Orange Nova remained addled. “I am my own self here?” He had a bad habit of repeating back anything anyone said that didn’t make sense to him. Which was quite a lot.

“Yes. Look around.” George waves his arm. “Newcomer’s Beach, the Magenta Sea, Master Duncan Avocado’s place over there.” George indicates his friend’s house to their left.

“This is what you have now. This is all yours. This is all ours. We are the dead and the unborn. I prefer the latter, but I’ve been here a while. Not too long to get back now.” But he knew his words would mean little to Orange Nova.

Ignoring what the boy had just said, Orange proclaims he is hungry, and asks what there is to eat around this dump. George explains that there’s no need to eat here. “No eating, no defecation. The whole digestive system has been ripped out, hehe. You can breath underwater too. You can fly. You can pass through walls, if not the wall that separates this realm from others. You have more powers here than you did before, even if you don’t realize it now. Trust me, it will come. Perhaps sooner for some than others but it will come.”

George stared steadily at Orange Nova now and the expression on his face, his aura. He’d give this one about a thousand years before a return.

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No workout

Baker Bloch knew something he could do to perhaps help immediately. There was one too many of the same color within the sphere. He transformed into King Orange and teleported over to his house in Saturn. Greater Malefic, opposite Tronesisia’s positively charged Rose MoonDream cottage. Realm of Oranges which should be just Realm of Orange.

He takes one last gulp of wine through his forehead and begins the process. The King knew Orange Nova usually woke up about 7 and headed over to Muscle Madness to begin his daily 10 hour workout. It was 5 now. This was a window.

He goes outside. “Eclipse nightclub,” he thinks, staring in its direction. “Damn fine goblets of wine.” He then peers further, just around the corner. White house.

Orange — the *fake* Orange — would be sleeping upstairs in its only furnished room. *Barely* furnished. This should be simple.

—-

Goblet raised, King Orange strikes.

And strikes again. And strikes again and again. And again.

—–

Orange Nova turns from blue to white. At 7 sharp he walks out of his house toward Muscle Madness, chained to a routine even after death.

He can’t pick up weights. He can’t sit on the benches. He can’t do anything.

Morris shows up.

“I’m the last person anyone wants to see in their lives,” he admits. “But it has to be done. Come with me Orange Nova. You’re time has arrived.”

Morris changes into a wolf and leads him through the portal to the Great Beyond.

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Church

Baker Bloch changed into Pitch Darkly and summoned Buster Damm to the scene. They couldn’t think of anywhere else to go, so they took her to a nearby church just on the other side of the woods. Tronesisia and Mary were supposedly still out of town. VHC City was not safe any longer. King Orange’s place was too close to the edge for comfort. No, it would have to be the church. The real Clare Nova’s church.

The next day, after a good night’s rest in a barrel bed located on the second floor, Wheeler felt a little better. “You called me Clare,” she said to Pitch Darkly, sitting in a nearby chair. Damm was out gathering firewood in the forest. “I distinctly remember your voice saying the name Clare in alarm. You thought I was dead.”

“Actually, at first I thought you were Mary. But, yeah, I did say Clare. I’m not sure why. I knew you were the person in the picture.”

“What picture?” asks Wheeler.

Pitch uncrossed his legs. “Never mind that right now; I’ll show you later. First you must get better. That was a nasty collision you had with that tree.”

“Hallo-ween tree,” she said.

“That’s right. Nowhere near Christmas. I don’t know why you were there. Do you remember your name now?” Pitch looked at her keenly.

“I’m Wheeler. My name is Wheeler. Wheeler Wilson.”

“That’s it,” says Pitch Darkly, encouraged.

“Or is it Wilson Wheeler?”

—–

“Very sad,” Pitch said to Buster later after they’d shared a meal of fruit and vegetables downstairs. “It’s as if she’s stuck between regular and reverse times.”

“She must have made successful contact with the shadow being.” Buster looks around the room. “Sure are a lot of bear images around here, Pitch. And more in the woods — real ones. There’s a cave if you haven’t noticed. Bear cave. Thing shocked me when I went inside and turned to the right. But she’s a right fine fellow. Name’s Abigail. But she’s mad as hell at the real Clare Nova. She’s hunted her kind. For example, look to your right.”

“I know. I’ve seen it over there.”

“And your left.”

“Appears to be circus related,” guessed Pitch. “Clowns… bears. We’re moving closer to the truth.”

“Wheeler may not fully come out of it for a while,” said Buster, sighing.

“We may have to keep her here,” suggests Pitch. “Nowhere left to turn.”

“And danger all around.” Buster scans the room again.

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solidsphere

“What do you think Buster? It’s the first image that comes up in a google search for ‘pitch darkly’ that isn’t a part of the Sunklands blog.”

“But… there’s nothing in it,” Buster logically replied.

“Oh, there’s a bit of blonde or red hair if you look closer. Right down there at the bottom.”

“Not much.”

“No.”

“So what does it mean?”

“Hmmmm… I’m sensing a general absence about the Pitch Darkly character. And of VHC City as a whole. I guess you heard that George won’t be joining us anytime soon.”

“Yeah, sorry about that Pitch,” Buster replied. “False pregnancy alarms are tough. I have 23 children — I think — scattered around not only VHC City but the whole of mainland. Been around, you know. 2 by what use to be called Blue Angels alone. Use to live underneath the hot spot, hehe.”

“Thank you Buster. We’ll keep trying, of course. I want to have a kid so bad.”

“Do you?”

“Yes.”

“Do you really?”

“Ummm…”

“You don’t do you?”

“No.”

“Not at all, do you?”

“No. Not really at all.”

“Well there you go.”

—–

Outside the Sphere of Influence or Realm of Orange (take your pick at this point), our boy George has discovered a small Christmas tree on the southern edge of the PCH Forest he now dwells within. “Presents!” he cries, and looks at the tags. The one with the green bow up front is from Lou. The larger present that has a red bow says it’s from Morris. And then perhaps the biggest one tied with a white ribbon is from Osborne. Osborne Wells. Which to open first??

—–

Afterwards, Baker Bloch goes to the same spot in the woods and find something different: a seemingly dead witch glued to a tree she obviously ran into while driving around drunk on her broomstick. He now realizes whose head it is at the bottom of that empty picture.

“Clare!”

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Inside Out

“I don’t see the Castle Tower on here,” he says, peering intently. “*Nor* the Crystal Cottage.”

“No,” Tronesisia replies. “We’ll have to redraw the map soon.” She points.

“And there’s my own cottage. A bit inside the circle apparently. You can’t enter there. You will have to stay in the forest. Beginning just beyond the railroad. Just outside his influence. Realm of Orange. Do you understand?”

“Yes.”

“We must leave this place now.”

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Furtherment

Wheeler Wilson, Buster Damm and Pitch Darkly never really got to the meat of their talk from the day before. The next evening Baker Bloch teleported into what should have been the Crystal Cottage to scout out the area further. The house was no longer there. A tower had taken its place. Was this the real Clare Nova’s doing? Was she reading the Sunklands blog? A quite likely scenario.

At the bottom, an altar.

A child’s fort.

Several varieties of mushrooms.

Baker realizes the proper entrance to the tower is on the other side from him. The structure is in ruins. He circles around, but before ascending the proferred spiral staircase, goes out to the cliff above the railroad to check out these little purple fellas.

He goes back to the tower and starts heading upwards.

Nothing at the top except a single golden cube devoid of name or content. Darkness had come quickly. Was the tower some kind of test?

If so, did I pass it just by creating this post?


Hiding outside the Sphere of Influence.

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Drunk talk

“So tell me about this Bennington you are from,” requested Mary to Tronesisia on the porch of the robot lady’s Rose Moondreams Cottage. They had been back for about a day now. Mary wasn’t ready to return to the small house where she and Pitch Darkly lived now beside her favorite fishing hole. Pitch thought they’d be gone for another week. They were hiding out, in effect. Trying to unravel what that kid was doing on the bridge and his cryptic talk about mutable time. Wegee had at least told them his name was not Loki, the orange word printed on his t-shirt. That was a brand.

“Oh, nothing much to tell,” Tronesis answered. “Dangerous town. Moreso than Farmington where you are from, of course. How’s that place doing these days?”

“Same as yours. Nothing’s changed. Peaceful and calm.” Mary thinks back to another part of the wegee session from earlier in the day. “Have I ever told you the story of my real last name?”

“Ball, isn’t it?” Tronesisia had heard that from Pitch. “Some relation to Old Martha Ball, I recall.” She takes another swig of her craft beer. Mary does the same with her own. By the way, Mary was not pregnant any longer. She had entered the Realm of Orange again and his influencing sphere. More on that later.

“Yes. My full name is Mary Ball, but not *Chuckles*. Martha was my aunt. Martha Spit Ball. She owned a lot of the Epping Woods. And your killing shack you’re so familiar with now is actually the place I was born. My aunt took care of my mother during the pregnancy. Then we stayed on until I was 3 or 4. Farmington was much more dangerous back then.”

“Oh, I didn’t know that,” said Tronesisia, surprised at this new twist. And Bennington was peaceful during her own childhood, she thought. Something switched between the two. She swigs again.

“Anyway, I kept coming back and coming back for visits and eventually I just moved here as a teenager. My aunt got me a job as a singer slash dancer slash juggler over in the Blue Angel, which she helped manage. Seedier place in those days.”

“Ahh, love that club,” Tronesisia said. “I use to sing there too. Before your time, however.”

“I didn’t know *that*. We’ll have to compare singing voices sometime. But I was best at juggling, admittedly. That’s how the clowns found me.” Mary gets up from the rocking chair while downing the rest of her beer. “You want another brewsky or are you good?”

“Just bring a whole six pack out here and set it on the floor between us,” Tronesisia requested earnestly.

—–

2 hours later…

“Perhaps the first thing I remember as a child was hearing that awful awful plane crash over at what’s now the Catsocks Crater — sometimes incorrectly called a sinkhole. No, *Sikkima* has a stinking sinkhole. That’s not a sinkhole. That’s just a plain, rotten hole. My mother, at the time see, told me it was the end of the world when it happened. To everyone’s horror, Osborne Well and his monster posse crawled out from the tail piece of the smoldering wreck basically untouched, since, in part, they were already dead, you know. And the fact that they were stored away in those insuladed coffins and crates. Insula-*ted*. Livelies or beaners in the front part, as the monsters were wont to call them — all dead. Plane No. 4. Broke in two. I saw the plane. Everyone in a 1000 meter radius of VHC City came to witness the thing. But it didn’t do its job. Didn’t crash into something.” Mary pointed north beyond Tronesisia with a wobbly hand here.

“But it *did* crash into something,” Tronesisia replied, her own head a bit unsteady as well. “That plain between Tussock and Catpla… Catalp… Catalpa. The plane plain. Fortunately unpopulated at the time. But in former times… prostitutes and jugglers. Elephants and gorillas. Circus, in short. You’d hear, ‘the circus is coming to town,’ and everyone would flock to the same plane… plain, but for a very different reason. Pleasure not plain. Pain!”

“Strange strange world it is, my friend Sissy. My *good* friend Sissy.” Mary takes the last beer from the carton on the floor between them and pops the cap. “Stakes on the big top had just been pulled up the week before, yeah.” She chugs. “But that’s not what I’m talking about, my friend. That’s not what I’m talking about.” She drew herself up from a slouching position while taking another drink. “Pitch Darkly was blamed in part, just because he was about the only monster living in VHC City at the time of the acci-dent. Him and Buster. Even though the vampires and monsters of the plane were victims or potential victims themselves. A line was drawn. You stay across the tracks over there and we good VHC City people will be over here, you see. Pitch was cast out. Buster was cast out, even though he secretly has his coffin still over in town in a hidden nook beneath the Blue Angel. The perv.”

“I know,” replies a hiccuping Tronesisia. “I use to sing there in the ’20s!” They both laugh.

“The clowns went underground after that. They thought they were the target because of the presence of the vampires, the monsters. But they weren’t the target. I should know. I lived amongst them for 3 long years. Three long long years.”

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buddy

“I can still make this role work out,” Wheeler said to herself while standing before the scrying mirror between representations of the sun and moon at the real Clare Nova’s Crystal Cottage in Hooktip. “I will summon forth a helper from the shadows dark.”

Pitch Darkly suddenly appeared in the yard outside the door, with friend.

“Damm,” she uttered.

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