We live in the North now, me and my collection of avatars. Centered around Route 12. Below us are Upper Austra, Lower Austra, Wild West, and Yd Island. Between them are border areas such as Alien Island, Frog Isles, and Lands End. Surrounding it all are the Rim Islands and also Southwestern, where that big rock which obviously doubles as the oracle Carrcassonnee is located. The rock also links Nautilus to the Real World through Iowa. Most likely. Marty disappeared inside it; became one with it. He and Roger Pine Ridge drove all the way to the central square in that old, beat up Chevy that apparently didn’t go into the levy. Marty: how can interior and exterior be the same?
Maybe the answers lie here, a bit outside the defined hypercube.
Filed under **VIRTUAL, 0033, 0310, Frog Isles, Iowa, Lands End, Lower Austra^, Nautilus, North, Rim Isles, Rooster's Peninsula, Southwestern, Upper Austra^, Wild West, Yd Island^
There’s two of these things now, Debbie Doom thought about the colossal *women* statues towering above her in Lorsters Worst, queen city of Nautilus’ Yd Island. For now. Could be a hopeful *sign* — things have changed, and so on. Maybe the door… but she would know soon enough. She holds the key in her hand, dream object no longer. Because dreams have come true. She was *trapped* but for a good reason. It was the only way out.
Frozen pantomime, she determined about the crowd in the center of town and walked through it all, paying no attention to the fake conversations right left back forth. One objective tonight.
She doesn’t have to unlock anything. All she has to do is hold it and–
Venus had finished her song. Wasn’t her worst but wasn’t her best. Lorster… Lester, I recall. Must get back to the purple door, another door to open if we now have the key. And we might.
“Well I’ll be,” he said, withdrawing it from sudsy purple. Not poop after all! Thanks Dovie!
On her break, she liked to come to this park in the middle of it all to read her latest red book, this Lorsters Worst lady of the night. No sex in the book, since she needed to get away from all that which surrounded her like stardust glitter. Here: good solid plants. Earth. Grounded, she was. But break’s about over and the man with the big blue RAM truck with the souped up engine she didn’t quite understand the workings of had just killed his current adversary, the one who kidnapped his Damsel in Distress who was the same as his wife. These were no swingers. Really. That phony lifestyle got them in trouble but there was no sex involved in their interactions with the Charlotte club. Why would he allow that? she thinks for the character, the retired policeman who was now a private dick. That would be his, ahem, *unit* thinking for him, which needed to remain private.
I think back to when I met the guy, in a Cassandra City establishment called Big Dick’s Halfway Inn.
He sat in relative darkness in the corner of the lobby, waiting for me it seemed. Probably was. I was an older man at the time, which means the same age as currently down to the month, day, minute. I asked him if he was the name on the establishment. He scooted forward, removed his crossed hands and revealed himself, said he was that in the flesh. I turned away, having seen enough. Biff Carter was his name. I remember that clearly. I also recall the hotel was full that evening, and I ended up sleeping in the chair opposite him in the lobby. He removed himself sometime — I don’t recollect when. Gabby (clerk) returned about midnight from his looong long lunch break, as he called it (another break!), woke me up, and after gabbing quite a bit about unrelated topics said I couldn’t stay here. Then he recognized me from the band — we were playing at Shenanigans at the time — and changed his mind, said it was okay instead. He later wrote me, after I had acquired much greater fame and also fortune, that he regretted that night with all his soul. Should have kicked someone out and given you their room, he said, but still didn’t say who.
Actually, now I’m recalling an earlier incarnation, involving another red door ta boot. Wendell “Biff” Carter yes. Just retired from the police force, check (after the Oakley Annie debacle: see case-file 37-QZ). Returned to the force briefly when former fellow cop Philburt got sick on pill, but the debacle that caused him trouble in the first place resurfaced in an unexpected guise (Orkley Andy: see follow-up case-file 38-AP). It was as if he was circling back on himself in an endless loop. He needed to break out. Buying half of a small hotel in the Queen City of the South seemed a recipe for success. But then came the swingers.
Could have been recently deceased Jer Ronamy from Starfish Lake Gabby wanted to kick out but I’m not entirely sure. Have to check the old hotel registers sometime if possible.
(to be continued)
Although separated now, she often dreams of him still, and sometimes she *is* him in the dream, like here. He (she) exits the rundown house where he’s lived for going on 25 years, intending to go to the library but then realizing he doesn’t have a key any longer. He doesn’t work there no more. A dove flies overhead and something lands in his beautiful purple hair, making it imperfect. Thinking the dove pooped on him, he curses it as it wings its way back over the plain whence he or she came.
He turns around, intending to wash his hair out in the sink or, better yet, take another shower, then apply more gel and finisher. He steps into the shower after removing his clothes. He’s still taller, darker, and, yes, more withdrawn. But he’s about to change that, about to wash away his “sins”. The water comes on. He washes his tall, dark body. He wishes Debbie were still around, wishes he could invite her over to join him. He imagines them together in his head as he continues to suds. Body done now; hair next. The water moves to the head. He rinses it well before applying shampoo, and, finally, touching it for the first time since the dove incident. His fingers start to move around his scalp. Something oddly shaped and metallic is quickly encountered. He withdraws it from his curls, looks down at the open hand. 319. This is the gift of the dove. This is the gift of the *library*. He doesn’t need to head there any longer.
She wakes up.
Lower Austra over there for sure, thinks Dickie Doom, looking west through a telescope from his position on Stoogle, at a cafe and boat repair establishment. Nice landscaping too.
“So who’s your friend?” asked Debbie Doom to — we better determine a relationship — let’s say brother and sister instead of husband and wife. So: brother Dickie.
“Picked him up on the marketplace,” answered higher Dickie to lower sister Debbie on the tail of the sea monster. “Freebie,” he further explained. “Brand new as well; seemed to fit (the looming mystery).”
“Um hm,” she said. “Er, where’s his clothes?”
“Dunno,” answered Dickie, daring to look over at the lowest-of-all spectacle. Frog head, frog feet and hands, human body. He tried reloading (the outfit) but same result.
“And the rain.”
“Yes,” answers Dickie. “Somehow, one way or another, the Frog must turn into Prince.”
“P,” she said. “Power. He’s trying to tell us something.”
It looks like a major question in the division of Lower Austra from the rest of Nautilus is the status of the Frog Islands, we’ll call them for now, beginning, west to east, with Brork, *Froog*, and Stoogle. Right now, Dickie Doom is in Stoogle, looking at a map that seems to indicate, with its drawn yellow line, the Frog Islands are part of larger Yd Island where we’ve just been through (wife? sister?) Debbie Doom. We’ll get back to her story in just a moment.
But then the picture changes and we are confused again. The Frog Islands seem to move through space and time.
Maybe it’s a situation of turning a frog into a prince again like in those other fairy tales.
Dickie Doom stands up. And spots another triangle.
(to be continued)