“Wrong Way Winnie (Sheltering the Tou)”:
“Looking at a Cave that is not a Cave (Satin’s Rule!)”:
“The Situation Escalates (Bored Removal)”:
Always look for the spaces between things. There lies art.
I am not a painter in this life. I am a collagist. Moving on…
“What does the future hold for me Esmerelda?”
“A cave? A *landscape*?”
Very faint from across the table again: “Enter the cave.”
He paid Ms. Wells handsomely and was on his way again.
“Maybe there are good Boos and bad Boos,” offered up Harrison Ford Jett, still learning about and absorbing the impach. His precious Bluebird!
“Maybe,” said back brilliant Fern Stalin, his counterpart, his mentor for tonight. But she kept thinking of Mistery Island and how to get back there. “You better get back to her; she’ll be waiting. And you better cook up a pretty good explanation why you suddenly had to leave her side. And don’t mention Boos!”
“Okay.” They split after that, not leaving any firm plans for a future rendezvous. It’s possible, Fern realized, that she’d seen the last of Harrison. Or at least those apples. Decision paths lie just ahead…
“Don’t be a stranger,” she cryptically ended and was gone.
“It probably started here,” stated Fern, showing the origin of the Boos. “In, let’s see, collage #13 — unlucky 13 in this case — of the Boos series. Boos came from Boos — Illinois that is.”
“That’s next to Indiana and its famous Dunes,” chipped in Harrison Ford Jett, eager for knowledge tonight.
“Correct. Anyway, the Boos come from the planet Mars. There was a failure — in Tungaske as we’ll keep calling it — to create a working, proper *sphere* by several of its artists, a joint effort. Sphere of Space if you will. An abnormality set in; in ways these are the two moons of Mars, Phobos and Deimos, terror and dread, explaining the faces. Rust probably represents Ida B. Wells from Rust College, who was a champion of freedom: diagonal (echoing some former talk they had concerning Bellisaria). The Boos ate the freedom, took it away from them. The Boos are the elitists, also explaining the white-wash color. They proceed horizontally beyond the edge and into the world itself. Evil has been let loose — again.”
“Who is the man in the water?” queried Harrison. He was a band member on the run, trying to get as far away from Bluebird as possible tonight, an ironically named character it seems. Bluebird of misery instead, misery and mystery in one. Mistery. So said Fern.
“Man on the fringe; man watching fringe, man *from* Fringe. Peter I believe. Watching the Boos do their evil doings, the Rust girl perched precariously on the rust colored cliffs — gone. He sticks, lets see, he (as the Spaceman) sticks his hand in a hole and it is gone — just below where the girl *use* to be. The missing hand symbolizes the missing girl, hmm. And missing pieces of Mars, moons.”
Harrison glances sideways. He’s eager to get to the next collage in the Boos series and be done with it. Boos attack! But… well, let’s just let Fern talk for herself.
“And here we are.” They spread out from each other, just as the Boos, black and white, spread out in the sky above Tungaske, (numbered buildings) ready for conquest.
(to be continued)
He sat at the table outside the bamboo hut he’d rented several days back and thought about All Orange and what he’d lost. The phone rang (D Flat). The phone never rang.
“Hallo?” He was expecting someone jovial, not saturnine. He was surprised. He stared at the missing blue eye on the Book of Monsters before him as she continued to chatter. He dare not crack the cover lest the other one roll off. Especially now. Would he get a word in edgewise?
She hung up the phone. “We’ve got to keep an eye out on him,” spoke Jeffrie Phillips, glancing over at his bamboo hut across the water. “He may even try to off himself, say.”
“No he won’t.”
Her hair was now the green of seaweed but she was no monster, or at least Jeffrey thought. Was she?
“What next?” he queried about her appearance. “Your skin turns green?”
“Maybe,” she shot back quickly. Both knew that if this happened she was lost for good to him. Maybe even the mohawk would reappear.
Something was happening on this sim. A painter paints. A complainer complains. ART appears. A perfect circle. Pooh with his honey pot moves away from the scene with little to no impact now.
A perfect circle, eh? I thought, yellow included. I knew what this meant.
“Brain Damage he had.”
“We’ve already determined that, okay,” she replied, planning her escape route. Starbucks should be open by now — 5:00. But Baker is trying so hard to understand. The 2 is impossibly in front of the boy-man, right where the brain was…
“Have him interact with someone in this specific location, so close to Collagesity. Alysha, perhaps. She hadn’t been in a post in a while.”
“Only if,” she compromised, “Kolya goes back to the airport and finds out more about the red book and the accompanying red light.”
“Deal.” He spits in his hand, which she naturally doesn’t shake. Such a goofy person (!).
“See there? Mysten Underhill and Mysten, let’s see, can’t recall the other one. Anyway, those *2* squares, just there. Down toward the lower right corner; right in front of you, in fact. Do you see the houses? Of course you do. I rented one of those, or attempted to. And *Spongeberg*, yes, was there. I recall the number… 144. Table. We tried to set a table up. Didn’t quite work.
Alysha let Kolya ramble on. He was a true friend and would do anything for her. He was attempting to explain the past of Mysten not far atall north of Collagesity through this old sim map they’d stumbled upon. He’d been here a long time. But so had she, just not as long.
“We owned just to the east,” he continued, remembering more and more about “2”. “But not in Siliconicus: that would be *southeast*. But the *Church* of the Silicon Soul was set up right on the border again. Right beside our own property.”
“The Table House.”
“Yes!” he exclaimed. “That was what it was called (!).” He paused, joyful in the memory. He could see vague faces around it.
They had to go back in the past. And they could (!). Except only the darker side, the place of fumbles and bumbles. Spongeberg the Destroyer was still here, still lived in the general Collagesity area, but just more down in the east, beside Highway 14. He’d given up on 13 — moved on. The darkness beckoned. Christ and accompanying Christianity was not around to brighten the day any longer.
They both took another big lick of their triple scoop sorbet cones before continuing.
“Funny about places like this, Ayesha,” Kolya then said with cold mouth.
Alysha, she thought without correcting aloud, use to such things.
“Like they are stuck in time. Harder… more resistant to the general erosion… um.”
“… of Our Second Lyfe,” she finished for him.
“The 2, yeah.”
She looked at the top of his holey head, where the rain gets in. Simultaneously he recalls someone at the Table, as if they are linked by one user (they were). But he passes over the memory of Marty as if it were a letter gap. On to the next thought-color, green I believe.
Kolya realizes that was a lot of ice cream for a little girl. Because he could definitely finish it for her. “Are you done with that?” he couldn’t help asking while staring at the stack of mostly unlicked colorful balls in the cone in her hand. He was eager for more brain freeze.
Premiering on facebook now: “Strange Corner of West Virginia”, part of the Weird Wonderful series. This new work is set in Clay, the county seat of Clay County and made fully redundant around WWII when then name was changed from Clay Court House.
There is much to unpack here; Clay may be featured again. Projected title for future work (and picture it could be based on): “Bail set for Bail: the Great Redundancy Trial of ’53”. We’ll see!
He was a blank, ready to be written upon. Some called him Jonny already. He stared out past the Bellisaria Blues Bar toward the sea, the houseboats. He was looking for a… kite? His mind went blank again. He was a blank. Jonny he was called by some. He stares past the blues bar toward the sea, the sky, the… what was it? A ship. A boat or maybe… space?
I decided it should be a 200 meter long tether of red, knotted up like a rock hard ball of yarn left of center. This is the Jonny part.
Alice Farrowheart was inconsolable. My poor poor Toddles, she lamented to anyone around at the time, the police for now.
“There there, now now,” the squad all attempted to calm. “Toddles is still in town. The tracker implanted in her neck like everyone’s neck tells us so (!).”
“But *where*?” she exclaims back.
“The tracker says Apple’s Orchard. Wait.” Officer Robert Petrie Dish checked Master Radar again. “Heading to Neptune now… yes, she’s in Neptune. She’s… making a turn left. Looks like she’s going to Black Ice.”
“You’ve checked *everywhere*. She’s *physically* NOT in the city!” Alice Farrowheart couldn’t help herself. She had to yell to get the feelings out. Where — was — TODDLES??
The officers and gentlemen around her knew there was one other place she could be hiding but were too scared to raise the possibility. They knew Collagesity was more or less fully integrated into NWES City — and Collagesity contained collages and now NWES City does too. Precious precocious child Toodles could have gone to the Inside World, perhaps, gasp (they collectively did when they thought of this), Picturetown? Inside the pictures that were collages? The squad thinks again about how unwise it was for town to decide to stay “city” and live with all the other lesser and inferior cities intruding in and around it, like unwanted pregnancies and resulting ragamuffin children. They should have been cast off with the name. Now look what happens. Actual children disappearing. She could be anywhere now, even — gasp (again) — Canada.