“You are my *sister*.”
“Katy is a difficult nut to crack,” continued TronAxis in his Tyranea office while Baker Bloch and Hucka Doobie furiously take notes, trying to shorten the night so that another post can be created after the present one. “Oh. Sorry I guess I should have put that another way, ahem. Kate is a difficult *case* to crack–”
“You said she still can’t tell what time it is, what year it is?” uttered Hucka Doobie, attempting to move things along.
“That’s right. One moment she’s little Katy Kidd, stuck in a purple house with an abusive mother, and then the next she’s Kate McCoy, all grown up and back in reality. How long has she been here now?” he inquired partly to himself, partly to the “guardians” Baker and Hucka sitting before him. “5 years I would guess,” he answers while looking up, then looks left. “And the purple house still sits right over there in the opposite corner of the sim. Vacant — the mother’s been dead that long. Still she torments this poor woman-child from the grave.”
Baker’s turn now. He lifts pencil from pad while starting his question. “How about the sphere? She hasn’t strayed down the path of Blue Berry Girl and gone all nudist on us? I’m not (he flips a page, checking notes before he speaks again) sure why — (flips more) she was hired actually. Wasn’t she a former patient?”
“Of Dr. Baumbeer my predecessor, yes,” answers TronAxis, trying to be as transparent as possible within the framework of client-patient confidentiality. “Blue Berry Girl is a very capable therapist, and there’s no therapist like one who understands the patient’s viewpoint, which she does.”
“And Vain and Artery Boy–” Both men in the room stare at bee-woman Hucka, more woman than ever now her antennae have permanently retracted into her skull. They know she’s on the wrong timeline, and could set them back precious minutes, seconds. They decide not to answer her and advance to the next subject. But they then speak at the same time.
“After you, Mr. Bloch,” TronAxis graciously allows.
“No, after you sir. You’re the doctor after all. The new one.”
“Alright, if you insist, thank you.”
(to be continued?)
Jeffrie Phillips begins his latest assignment proper back in Instabar, the sim highlighted in section 3. Might as well be Sector R.
Perhaps the last dinner of the late, great Mr. and Mrs. Achilles T. Pippin — The Pippins, he considers, who of course include Mary with her red umbrella we suspiciously see little of, even though at least one character says she carries it around all the time. Better check on that, he thinks…
He finds the red wine stale but acceptable for an Australian. Better start looking around for that umbrella, he ruminates.
Hold on, he ponders. This seems unusual, hmm. Cyan… cyanide. Cy Twomile, one of the two most recent victims in this here photo-novel, even though he’s locally known as Big Black Smoke. Derogatory racial name? He better find a computer somewhere.
But what’s this? In the Peppins’ living room: red, blue, and then a yellow lemon on top. And cyan turns to red in inverted color mode — which he, like Aqua Dude before him, can switch on and off when needed, which he does here.
Yes, something about that coat hanger or whatever it was, he contemplates while sitting in the swing beside the 32 square meter house that caused all the messy Instabar trouble in the first place. Buster Damm, hrmph. Popping in and out of this reality at his convenience to cause harm and mischief, like a little, blood sucking gremlin or something. If only we could trace him back to his Pot-D origins.
He decides to check the “coat hanger’s” description remotely while enjoying his hot coffee the swing graciously provided for him, pretty good for Cambodian.
Ahh. *Cage* stand. Bird cage. But where’s the bird? Or *birds*, even?
He travels further back in time than ever to find out.
“So how did you find her?” queries Trojan-Durexian war vet Sam Bee, back from the dead.
“Accident,” answers fellow vet Duncan Avocado. “About like everything here. That matters.” They both watch her hover around some more.
“Carol?” calls Sam Bee toward it after the wait. He looks at Duncan. “Could it be…?”
“I think it has to be. A cemetery with one ghost and no headstones. This is the town.”
“Better follow her, then.”
“Well. You are the *Pumpkin King*, after all.”
Duncan always hated that war derived name. To death.
The ghost disappeared on this parcel. They stopped. “This must be the place she wanted us to visit,” spoke Duncan A. “Another empty cemetery?”
Red stop sign; red rent overdue box, they noted. Then something else red more in the distance…
… but on the same parcel and in line with the other two.
66 sign, which probably can be expanded to 66.6. Owned by the Red Devil himself.
“Look Allen Y. Dolphins doing tricks (!). Marvelous.”
On a different part of the pier, Allen Y. remained disappointed.
“Why are we *here*? And not there or there?” He pointed southwest and northeast respectively here.
“I told you. We have to move to the center for perspective because we’re in the center of Part 4 of the new Collagesity novel, Allen Y. This is Grey Havens, and, as I checked, certainly a haven from the grey, corner sims we’ve been focused on so far: MISTY MO and Gulf of Loon. Look at your inworld map and you’ll see.”
“I’m tired of seeing,” he spoke plainly. “Everything is too clear to me now. I’ve seen the writing on the bottom.”
“Oh come on,” encouraged Jennifer M. Friend, still squinting at the receding dolphins while thinking of the 2 hearts as one dealie he reviewed earlier. Not going to happen here. But the Chee Chee…
He thought back. “I see one heart over here, and then another smaller heart over there.” He pointed to the gap. “Can this be filled?” But she was facing the other way and could not see. The Black Lake obscures. A little later he decided earrings at the Calas market would send a correct message. To add to the roses; he couldn’t help himself.
“I simply love the flowers… and the earrings, Allen Y.,” delivered Jennifer M. Friend in resonance with his thoughts. “One over here and the other over there.” She though of each ear respectively. “Just like I like them.”
“So you’ve said.” He sighs again.
He couldn’t quite resolve the ruined and useless parasol from this distance — thought it another of the circling ravens at a glance. But this particular black shape remained motionless unlike the others. And it was more triangularly. He better go investigate.
This is when Dickie Doom first sat on the Throne of Jethro. Or was it the Bauer Throne. Anyway, that’s when he initially surveyed the ruined Fries with Cheese church where former New Island neighbors Mrs. Fogg and Ms. Frame hid out in the dark, dark days after the apocalyptic lime kiln explosion. Deafening it was to their ears, blinding to their eyes. Yet after several excruciating hours the sights began to return for each, the sounds. Silence all around for the longest time. Visuals, but of wrecks. Twisted metal. Tires. Crates and doors and chairs, paint removed by the disaster. Highways broken and trust up in the air instead of grounded and whole. The insects remained, hidden in the filthy soil. Then the birds came back. The blessed birds. The insects scuttled out. The birds swooped in, first one, then a few, then a flock (or murder). Gobble gobble. The cycle of life and death was restored in this small way. This opened the doors for others: rats, of course; a few wild cats who ate the rats, and then the larger animals. Mastodons. No, not mastodons. But some other large animals. Hippos might have numbered among them. Tigers. Yes: tigers. And dogs the size of rats the size of cats.
And the ruined parasol mirroring the ruined church turned out not to be black but purple, the color of violets. Dickie Doom missed flowers greatly.
He better get back to the shelter.
Hucka Doobie also stops by to pay her last respects to long time Collagesity barman Furry Karl. She even sheds a number of tears. But he looks more filled out now than I remember him, contemplates the bee person. Still hairy but not so much. She then remembers Baker Blinker turning into something similar about a year ago, when all the oldest town avatars got together just after the Billfork Table Meeting at the Blue Feather. In fact, this is the same person… figure! She also remembers Baker Bloch transforming into Old Mabel at the same get together. She listened open mouthed at subsequent proclamations. Baker Bloch is *many* avatars in one. Baker Blinker is a couple. Hucka Doobie is merely “herself,” as she’s presently constituted, and then also herself in obsolete, “classic” form, which is more pure bee slanted and which she only pulls out during special occasions, like Halloween year before last, pheh. The party where she almost got killed by Wheeler. Hucka Doobie *thinks* she’s forgiven the former town leader, but still remains unsure. Anyway, I’m wandering, she says to herself. Karl… must ask The Bakers about this.
“Baker Blinker,” Hucka Doobie calls softly. But Karl definitely seemed dead as a doorknob (curious expression).
Hucka Doobie then turns to leave, but notices the teleporter on the floor in front of Pirate Bluebird’s coffin — complete with a blue rose someone left on the lid. She wonders what’s on the second floor now of what was once called Home Orange, so heads upwards.
Open toilets on one side. “Okay,” she says. “Kinda disgust-ing.”
And then this on the opposite wall: “The tide is turning…” A sign of things to come.
She then sits just outside on the front porch of Starbuccaneers, staring over at the Boos gallery across the way and pondering what it all means.
She sits there for the longest time.
“What are you looking at, little man?” the approaching Tammy Whatammy exclaimed, on her way up Cannon Road to pick up some things left behind at her old log cabin rental.
Great, Rocky thinks. My first customer! Hope the store doesn’t disappear again. Stupid root prims.
“Howdy over there,” the now white Paul says. No clothes again except the underwear, to mitigate his demon nature as much as possible. “I’m going to clean you out today, hehe. I have a whole city to feed for a couple of days. Malone Central.” Paul tested the walking raccoon. “You’ve probably heard of it,” but he almost said that as a question.
“Nope,” states Rocky plainly. ‘But I’m glad of the business. I’m a novel writer myself, but the second book is going slow, and my original tome isn’t selling as well as I planned. Long story. So have *you* ever heard of ‘Bible Truth’? That’s my town, I guess you could say.”
“I’m afraid I haven’t. But I’d like to spend more time in The Above. I’m from around here but not from around here. This store is new. I heard about it through The Grapevine. We get hungry down there in Malone Central, but have just existed on what grows on the almost barren Grassland for a long time. It’s the grass itself. We’re… well, we’re all pot heads I suppose you could say. There’s a robot… but that’s a long story as well.”
The anthropomorphic animal and almost naked man share a smile. “Well, help yourself. Munchies all around. If you’re into the healthier stuff, there’s a cooler with meat and cheese products in the back. Maybe some yogurt — yeah, yogurt. We don’t specialize in vegetables, sorry. There’s a garden around here you can loot for carrots, however. I don’t recommend it, though.” Rocky looks over at his gun, thinking back to the day he had to use it to chase off the clowns. Those dratted clowns.