Maybe I just didn’t deserve Rose Heaven (I changed the name from Rosehaven because I didn’t think I deserved it). I will never live here, beyond that brief stay last winter. But…
… Murdoch’s castle remains, changed from an inferior product last year. Back to the more authentic original. Why? I sit on Dog Island with Wheeler-as-Charlene and ask her the same. “Goodbyes,” she replied. “And hellos”. Something else could happen here.
It occurred to him tonight while wandering around the old Same Place that he might be going slightly mad, kind of like Mercury X. Rising toward the end of his shortened life. In real life there is no such thing as a dulciwheel which plays a tune of complex design before him. He’s notice some time slips lately, and duplications. Heck, *he’s* a duplication, since there’s another Barry of similar, complex design in these here novels, art and writing in one. But after thinking about it more, he’s determined this is mostly projection from others. He *appears* mad but he’s not. No ghost variations here. And he’s been studying Robert Schumann, another dude who famously became mad toward the end of his life. Maybe he should stop listening to his music. In fact, that tune…
He quickly exits this portion of La La Land, needing some air. He walked right past Suisan sitting at the door, not noticing her presence. “I heard you were back in town.” Muffled talk through an omnipresent mask. Same old Suisan. The old Same Suisan. Suisan Same. Daughter of the owner of this here place. Makes sense she’d be here, then. Barry turns.
“Suisan! I’m glad to see you. But you scared me in the moment!”
“How come? This is the old Same Place. Makes sense I’m here.”
“Yeah… suppose. It’s just.”
“You’re *not* going insane.”
“No buts. I’m here to talk to you. About your mother, heck, anything you want. Even, dare I say the name, Pansy Mouse?”
“Let’s take a walk,” Barry DeBoy urged to his old friend, one of his oldest. She was there even before the beginning. Before the tie.
(to be continued)
The artist whose name sounds like Rothko sits opposite Andy Warhole, one a-hole of a guy.
“The soothsayer will be here soon and we’ll *see*…
who’s the better artist in hyperspace and hypertime.”
“Just hypertime will do. I don’t do hyperspace.” His voice was level and confident, like he was the more famous artist already instead of a basic unknown. Andy was threatened. He’d been to Gabby several times since we last saw him over in Cassandra City (Moe’s –now sold!). The picture was clearing in his smoky ball. Andy was not the most famous artist of the land! Gabby then explained this was in hypertime — Gabby worked mostly in hyper worlds to see his visions, he said — and thus there’s *time* to change the outcome. Gabby didn’t illuminate the idea of complementary hyperspace to the rather dim witted Warhole; probably knew it would be a waste of his breath. Hypertime was enough for today. The stage had been set. And here he was, murderous covid ravens circling above and outside this tiny cafe perched on the top of Yellowmoon or thereabouts. With the artist whose name sounded like Rothko but wasn’t Rothko. Close! Close enough for Andy. Because Andy indeed thought he was this artist. He had trouble resolving near from same in his fuzzy way of thinking, and Barry was just playing along with the confusion. So this would be another Post involving Close.
Thoko: that’s it. Maker of fine designer women’s clothing. But that would become a front for something much more deep and sinister, like the Amazon itself. It was like going from Nowhere to Somewhere…
Ant arrives from his castle in the distance. Harrison Jett will shortly show up from his castle in the opposite direction acting as rear guard. Soon the battle will commence in earnest.
(to be continued)
He was looking for The Red Book but instead stumbled into the wrong store. “Other side of town,” the purveyor spurned upon hearing his request.
“Ahh, I’ll just take a ‘Moby Prick’, then.”
“1 nickel please.” This was 1939 after all. Or thereabouts.
Biff Carter walked into the Cassandra City bookstore with the *correct* book. He laid a nickle on the counter.
“No cost,” the purveyor spurned. “You have to read it here.”
Biff Carter walked over to the bookshelf with the lone book not stuck or fused with it, took it to the store’s lone chair, and began to read. About himself.
“Of course, Albert. She *belts* out tunes like no one and she does this at The Diamond owned by a Black (man). We must get in touch with this Jim A.; see what he knows about The Room. Something happened there, er, Alberta… sorry about the name before.”
“That is okay, sir,” Alberta the Selenite butler dutifully assured. “I am but a humble servant, ready to serve.”
“I think I’ll wear the Great Belt again — stare out at the tire.” He knew he could get additional insights this night. Energy was obviously strong here in Urqhart or thereabouts now that Collagesity had been manifested. So exciting! Green: so green here. No arid, desert-like surroundings to deal with any longer. He was *free*.
Alberta returned with the belt. “Here it is, sir. Do you…?”
“No. I can do it,” requested Barry X. Vampire, knowing what Alberta was going to ask. He didn’t need help getting it on this time. He was getting use to the contraption. And the shock. More difficult for a man!
“I think it’s working, Albert!” he called back, happy in the moment.
“That’s very fine, sir.”
He deftly straddled the Baja Bullet, looking around. Star, huh? Yeah, he was in the right place. Now to find Your Mama and, hopefully, Jim A. as well.
Maybe start at the Starlite up there…
Axis can’t decide. To keep this office with all his energy lines embedded in it already…
… or to shift over to Morgan’s *old* office, even though no one yet knows it’s old. New(s) of his death has yet to spread locally. The virus is clogging the newsfeeds. “14 dead in Fearzum, 14 dead in Fearzum!” they cry, causing panic in the market. No, Freechild’s demise can’t break through that impenetrable Wall of Fear. But he’s behind that too, being from Fear*zom* and all (always gets a laugh). He created both. Might as well call him Mr. Pennsylvania.
But he has a meeting to attend. Over at Freechild’s place. Can test it out today himself for a while. See how he likes.
Yes, Axis thinks to himself while staring out at the Ashenlave summit we’ve seen once before in this here photo-novel, or at least the western part. No sea, but instead this peak looming before me, reminding me of where I came from. Granite far far above green. He looks stonily in the direction of Sandman and Ant-Man on the other side of the spacious, line free office.
“Gentlemen!” he cries in as Morgan Freechild a voice as he can muster, administrative skills peaking at a high. “We must get down to the *merger*.” Ant-Man, formerly just Ant and just The Man but now something quite else, stares over at Sandman, who was always a man as well as Sand — no morphing there.
Ant-Man, edging closer, knew this: that Sandman was afraid of the first change, which he’d already gone through. “No no!” wailed The Man after Ant approached him and then swallowed him whole, *becoming* him. Hucka Doobie didn’t tell him this drastic trick but Ant, after all, had a stupid internet feed and could look up how to soul merge on his own, duh. Quicky style.
Now Sandman’s turn.
He ate. He swallowed.
Copyright infringement free *Sant*man is born!
[photo removed for copyright infringement]
It started in earnest when I found the curtains on the slopes of Mt. Piren Bistano, the very summit where Rooster’s castle once stood. Baker immediately believed it could actually be a leftover bit of the castle, then started thinking along more symbolic lines, like these might be the curtains hiding the missing blue eye of Wheeler. Beans. Yes, Magika and Flip were gearing up for a continent wide wrestling tour. I need to go visit Karoz — I suppose he’s still in Chilbo, even with the seeming loss of Baker Blinker. In a different way, Axis and Wheeler, I mean, *Flip*, have a different arrangement. Marriage is not what it seemed to be. The Collagesity novels are coming apart from the center. What’s more core to them than the sacred marriage of Baker Blinker and Karoz Blogger?? Way back in 2 — we’re now closing in on the end of 17. If I can stop the Nautilus bias of 18 from entering.
Baker checks. The 2 people who now rent the whole of Piren Bistano do indeed seem in love. And the sim is covered by a giant heart. Baker found the curtains near the center when he teleported in, with another avatar exactly in this center as well but apparently far far above him somewhere, in their Heart Castle in the Sky. Could it be Roostre again in some form?
And viewable from just other side of this summit, probably quite near where he rented a cottage way back in 2010…
… the legendary Dancing Woman of Nautilus. Rumor has it that she knows upwards of a 1000 dances. Baker has only mythological interest here, hence the Genesis fox.
Meanwhile in Kowloon…
… Guy Benjamin finds the Red Door.
My Mission for tonight. Thank you Braynard!
I’ve seen the central figure before, Axis thinks after flipping over all the cards. Red Umbrella. All turning their back on me.
Axis wonders if he could turn his own hand into Heterocera. That would make him, as a whole, let’s see…
Axis hovers this hand over his heart, as if he could feel something beating in there once more.
Yes, here it is, he thinks later, returning to NWES for more of his fun. And *this* cave must be *my* cave. My new coffee shop, yes.
He worships Lu Ellen again before entering.
“Ahh. Good to be home.”
“What is that enchanting music, eh?”
“And how are you tonight, Ms. Teebestia. Long time no see!”
“H-how did *you* get here?”
“And good to see you too(!). I got here the same way everybody does. By logging in and changing clothes if needed.” Axis inspects Teebestia more carefully. “But, hmm, I see you don’t have that need. The logging in, I mean. You are just a prop!”
“Shhh. Baker Bloch is listing in.”
Axis turns toward the piano; sees a large, pale, somewhat blood splattered vampire playing the tune he was so admiring before and after entering the castle. So captivating. He must ask the name. But: Baker Bloch?
He calls over to the vampire. “Baker Bloch?”
The piano playing screams to a halt. Literally: a scream, a very high pitched one and nothing like Pitch’s actual voice. He was channeling a certain spider, but the spell has ended. He doesn’t know how to play the piano. He lifts his suddenly non-talented hands away from the keyboard. Pitch Darkly no more.
“W-well. What are *you* doing here?”
“Exactly what I said,” Teebestia quickly followed.
“Well,” Axis replied after a pause. “Aren’t *we* a fine 3-n-1, eh?”
“We’re definitely on the right trail, er, Jiggy.”
“Jackie, right right. But I don’t like the way he’s eyeing you.”
“He? How do you know he’s a he?”
“Because, er, he’s eyeing you.” He points over to his assistant. “*You*.” He points to himself. “Not me.”
She stares at it; it stares at her. “Could be a gay eye, you don’t know. *Jimmy*.”
“Johnny,” he corrected. “Um, Tony I meant.”
“You don’t know,” proclaims Jackie.
“I don’t know,” he admitted back. “Jerry,” he tries again. “‘J’ I’m pretty sure.”
“I think it’s Jimmy,” Jackie reinforced. “Like in Little. Jimmy Little. Jimmy Powell Little.”
“Just stop it.”
“Or he — or she — just doesn’t find you attractive.” She looked over at him. “Nah, that’s not it. You’re handsome as f-ing hell. *Jimmy*”
“You’re one to talk,” he decides to say in the void. Did he mean it? Sometimes. On the darkest of azure nights while hanging out in the donut hole.