The surrounding white trees should have been a clue about the situation. Conquests, she called them at another time, another place (Horns). The mannequin in the yard (Roxanne) doesn’t want to hear anything about the making of babies; she wants to remain innocent and pure and white (as the driven snow). She doesn’t want to fall into the Black Hole at the center of the Milky Way, a dreamer lost to reality. Reality is *here*. There is no black behind the white for her, being, you know, a dummie and all. Simple, perhaps. A meat and potatoes kind of (wooden) girl.
Fireworks trees, some call them, but that would be more on the opposite side.
We’ve seen the mannequin before. Scarlet some called her, a person ruled by Terra: Earth. Grounded in the soil. She’ll never be tired or poor or hungry again. She thus becomes a mannequin, seeing no other recourse. Stuck in the yard, she is, with a UFO above trying to beam her back up into the sky but not succeeding. Pineapple down the road shoots a cherry red laser beam and mows down a pair of blue-not-green A_Team traitors, influencing the rocket. Frosty turns away, still cold from the grave. Homer sits on the porch. *Homer* *sits* on the *porch*.
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.
There were all kinds of environments he could paint in. This one was just regular Midday, a default setting, actually one of his favorites and always easy to “reach”. Time was controllable in this land of two, initially in a fourfold way (Sunrise, Midday, Sunset, Midnight), and, with some additional quick adjustments, any time atall could be produced. Then, going beyond defaults, there were the customized environments, many in number. I’m sure all seasoned Second Lyfers have a set of their favorites that they regularly use. Mine include Fairy dark blue, Cornfield, Cromac, and Lo Gun Light. But Midday is certainly handy for initially brightening up any scene. So here we are.
He knows this is not Black Lake, where the monster came from or identified with at least. So a positive situation. He must paint this body of water before him over and over again for healing, for purification. He must drink the water — boil it first, of course. Take it into his body. Eventually he must — become this body (of water). 2n1. 4n1 to 2n1 to 1n1. There. He is TILE.
“A boy 13 to 10 and back to 13 and over and over. Obviously this is TILE, W.”
“(Small) ‘e’ to (large) ‘E’,” she agreed. “5 to 8, gaining 3. Years in this case.”
“Yellow to blue.” He looked out at the sky, the suns rising over the horizon. Horizings.
“But what of the step-down?” she continued in this vein. “The 12, then the 11, back to 10 and then back to 13, over and over?”
“Children according to the TILE documents and creeds. Red and green. Gred. Or Reen.”
“Redgreen. I remember that place. A place of war.”
“7 and 6. Mixed up. Which is higher, which is lower? Confusion in the middle. And by extension…”
“At both ends. Hi becomes lo. Hilo.”
“But one thing we agreed,” he offered as a compromise. “The Abyss plays no role in the end game. Because the Abyss has no real power. Only illusion.”
“Like static.” She squelched the urge to tack on the state names of Tennessee and Kentucky to this. It would all play out.
Tennessee. And Kentucky.
“Hey, which way to the Portal, Lt. Salt? I seemed to have been turned around when exiting David’s highly polished palace, pheh.”
“Thataway,” answers the military man with a point, part of the magical tapestry that is the citizens and denizens of Pickleland.
“Is that a Baby Yodo?” questions Sandman, distracted by creature directly beneath him on the table. “So adorable.”
“I must ask you to move on,” said the lt. politely but firmly. “Jenny Lind’s entourage will be arriving shortly. We must clear the area as much as possible.” Sandman knew he had to move the way Lt. Salt was pointing, or else be pointed at himself. But he couldn’t help himself.
“What do *you* say, little fellow?” he asked while leaning over, hands on knees. The creature’s ears twitched and moved back and forth, and his mouth along with it, as if he (or she) were searching for a correct response to Sandman’s question. Perhaps he (or she) was trying to make up for Lt. Salt’s rudeness in not answering the same — overcompensation. The answer had to be perfect and… he (or she) couldn’t do it. Neither ended up answering him, Baby Yada or whatever the f-ck it is shrinking back from the twitching and moving that signaled thinking into a state of immobility, perhaps Tennessee but perhaps also Kentucky (Ohio’s a longer shot).
“Outta here,” came the lt.’s next statement. Sandman was out of time. Feets get moving!
Contrary to popular opinion, there were places of sanctuary within the Omega continent. This treehouse for instance, although it is minimally so. Owned by Lisa the Vegetarian as it turned out; the “city” in front of it as well, which she declares in the land description she is, “just mucking about with like a lemonade stand”, with little in internal living space yet. In fact, she owns the mountain just north as well (the “city” spanning both), renting half to a company she doesn’t directly associate with but understands the reason for. Our Second Lyfe is split, a bigger half over here and a smaller half way over there. It’s like you have a basket of apples on one side and an orange or two on the other. How to sew them together? Well… you can’t. They remain…
Omega continent snowy peak seen at end of photo-novel 11
“Bella. *Not* Bellissaria, YUCK. Maybe I should take off my glooves before typing! Back to the controls of this ship-thing!”
“*There*. That’s… WHHHATT? BellISSIMA now. Maybe it’s my lack of a 5th finger, like Jerry Garcia. Surprised I did so well in school with that handicap! Brains over body I always say, although I have *both*. Except for the 9th and 10th fingers and toes. Oh well. I’m TIRED. I’ll try this planet, er, sim for a while. Belli-e-ss-s- *IT* can wait!”
“Funny how I can see the bottom of this waater now, YUCK. I don’t remember being able to DOO that before, HEE. And reentry has stripped the wood paneling off my ship, HAR!”
“I’ll try THIS house. Has a better viibe.”
“Hmm. No one here except little critters like *me*. Guess I’ll just swiing here a bit and wait for somone to show up, WEE!”
“OOOO. A RAINBOW butterfly!”
And that’s when Sandy Beech woke up.
He finally figured out how to remove the giant acorn of a head. He was relieved to find his own head still within, or perhaps it just grew there, like a seed in a pod, ready to hatch forth at the right moment. He pulled and pulled and pulled and finally it was there. Fully formed, seemingly. But the bikini top and especially bottom with attached tail remained. That was part of the new body apparently, part of the assimilation. 2 Sandy’s in one now. One Piece Sandy again. He had (seemingly?) woken up, but not in a good way.
And to top it all off now, he had big hands, like the greeter at the door of Bar FF. Odd name; he couldn’t think of what the initials could stand for. Probably something Japanese related, he realized. He couldn’t see the writing on the wall while staring down at monstrous appendages.
Sandy wasn’t alone at the bar. “I believe you know my father,” the 1/2 snow 1/2 sponge being spoke over.
Snowbob’s *mother* Snowmanster exits the closet again, looks around. “Well *this* is different. Underwater, eh. And apparently I can breathe underwater, lucky me. Now to find Old Grey once… oh. There you are!”
Crack reporter Tulsa’s headlining newspaper article for the NWES Gazette turned out to be laughable. Carrcassonnee was not dead; Gill Alex made sure of that. Overnight, he established Collagesity’s Temple of TILE in Marwood along with reassembling the great olive being’s 6 body pieces back together, with the 7th, eye, being worked on. Once that’s done, it’s done! The 7th is always tricky but I’m sure he’ll manage it. After all, this is the former Little Robert Plant Variant we’re talking about here, who was from quite nearby Nowtown which destroyed even closer, neighboring Zen City with an atomic bomb called the Tall Cool One, elsewhere: Kevin. I can’t make this stuff up. It happened! But that is zen and this was now. Um.
In fact I have an old map of Jeogeot to help prove all this, showing the position of Nowtown and Zen City on what’s called The Claw of the continent, with the sprawling NWES metropolis forming a number of years later just NW of Zen City. There may even be some past-present overlap between the two. And to make things even stranger, the old city of Sternberg also marked on this map is now the site of NWES City’s parallel, somewhat smaller sister burg centered in the Xenosaur sim. Our Second Lyfe still produces quite amazing coincidences! And to add even more, Sternberg was where Little Robert Plant Variant gave up his tube, but I jump ahead of myself too far. We first have to understand why Page didn’t go along with the Sunklands Initiative at the time, unwilling to disengage from the, by now, radioactive Zeppelin brand. Plant, both 16 and 59 at once, worked alone after that.
Carrcasssonnee: almost ready to speak again.
Okay, she’d finally found something that interested her in the past. A numbers station, broadcasting all the figures. She could call somebody! She first thought of Charlie Banana, an old lover. Good ol’ Charlie. Peach of a guy. But then a Siamese cat suddenly landed on the table from somewhere on high and talked to her instead. Wrong Charlie contacted (mentally). He said she’d missed something in Paperville and that she needed to return. Thinking the cat meant her blue-green shoes, she stated to it she’d already retrieved them, and plopped them on the table in front of him to gander at. As you can see, she’d also bought a matching dress in the meantime to fit in better with the past all around her.
Was it the shoes? the God-like cat thought, still ready to fill a void if need. But now Axis was in control of Paperville. Poetry Dancer here’s brother, or maybe former brother. And then there’s lover Barry X. Vampire. She desires the past, though. Charlie Banana. All the numbers. He better say the shoes were what he was thinking of and take his leave; regroup; try to find another angle (of communication). The past is the past, though. No changing or altering it. That’s why he doesn’t like to go there — here. No malleability; he likes malleability. Change. Flow. The Siamese cat takes its leave.
“I’ll leave you with the other Charlie,” it said/meowed/purred to Poetry. “It’s my mistake; that was the Charlie you desired in the moment. Not me. My bad,” it apologized again, and then wondered if he was overdoing it.
Charlie poofed out. Another Charlie poofed in. All the numbers.
“Hi doll baby.”