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.
Filed under **VIRTUAL, 0024, 0608, Apple's Orchard, Bellisaria^^, Black Ice, Canada, Canada/Picturetown, Four Corners, Marwood, Neptune, NWES Island^
That belt is giving me strange dreams, she thinks after waking up and recalling. Must stop using it so much.
She goes to check on Toddles. “Toddles?” Not in the bedroom, not under the covers. “Land sake’s child.” She calls downstairs. “Are you down in the kitchen!?” She descends the stairs — not there. She searches the entire house. Her precious precocious grandchild is gone! The belt did something to her that night. Broke through the drugs that Toddles had carefully and stealthily dispensed into her bedtime toddy, as was common. The belt doesn’t want Toddles to succeed in her mission of growing up way too soon so that she can save the world, several worlds in fact. All Orange.
If she wasn’t so worried about Toddles, Alice Farrowheart would have noted that the belt was gold instead of steely grey in the dreams, and wondered what that meant. It too is growing in power. A face off (to the death?) is probably in the works.
“Grounded!” I say. “GROUNDED. And gimme those drugs you use to doctor my toddy. You’ll grow up to be a heroin addict or worse and put me in an early grave, Toddles.” Alice Farrowheart, her dear dear “Granny,” could stop shaking her head; the belt did this, the psychic toddler realized. Alice F. held out her hands. “DRUGS,” she demanded. “I want to see what you’ve come up with in that wee evil noggin of yours.” Toddles produced 2 pills, one red and one blue, from the pocket on her baby jumper. “Take them,” she said. It wasn’t a request. It was an order. Time to pull out the big guns, hypnosis and not what. Toddles had collected a bag full by now.
“Where were you Toddles? I was looking all over for you. I was worried!”
“Just getting some milk for me and Whimpers (cat).”
“Aww,” Grammy let off. “That’s so *sweet*.”
“Phew. That was close!” she admitted to milk sipping Whimpers after Grammy puttered off back to bed.
“Oh no, Toddles. Those are much too big for you. Let’s go over there to the children’s section if your heart’s set on new shoes today.”
“I want *those*,” she demanded, quite unlike the kind, precocious, precious little thing we’re accustomed to in this here blog and accompanying photo-novel. She knew what they were. A one way ticket out of here. “*Those*,” she reinforced, holding her point. Holding, holding…
“Land sake’s, child. You’ll never be able to walk back across town with those things on.”
“I’ll manage.” She’ll grow into them soon enough.
“Vandalism, child. Someone’s added that yellow boy to *both* parts of the collage.”
Calm Grammy calm, thinks Toddles the psychic toddler, sensing something higher going on here. She sees a revamp of the entire Red Umbrella gallery sometime soon built around this change. Canada: she knew it was always going to end with our cold neighbor to the North. Pictures; they’re starting to enter all the pictures.
The boy is somehow 102. She wonders what *that* means.
“I’m so disgusted with all this, Toddles, I think I’ll just go home and play with my belt. Become one with it.”
Toddles hated to drug up her grandma to explore The City at night unless absolutely necessary. But she had to go back to Boos without her interfering *negativism* to investigate the first floor collages more and the perhaps clues she saw in them when they both visited the other day. Poor Grammy, the prescient (and precious!) toddler lamented. So fixated on the collages over at the Red Umbrella that she can’t see the advancement of all that interesting energy into the Boos series (exhibited) here above the Temple of TILE now. Toddles ganders at the toy action figure she knows later turned into Casey One Hole, another a-hole of a man, although she’s not suppose to say that word aloud. “Grammy be *damned*,” she dares while staring and glaring. “He *is* an a-hole. And what does he look over at in the other hand? A seed. A license plate that is a seed. A tiny car of a thing held by someone named Olive. Olive something. Kimball something… Oliver.” She was tuning in better, eliminating the rest of the static. “Oliver Wendell Douglas,” she speaks clearly. “And ‘A Dirty Little Wet Seed’.” We know what that is.
She thinks back to the rest of the series just viewed and how it progresses to this *point*, this seed.
Another seed? (comedy)
Hi Mr. Baker Bloch!
I’m admitting it’s so scary to write you (insert wavery letters there!). I *adore* your Red Umbrella Gallery and all the ART within and am so glad it has returned to [NWES City] (!!). My psychic grandchild and I have already visited several times. You may have heard of the gallery’s relation to a murder last year in our fair weather city. That’s me (!!!). I was the one who saw the rabbit in the collage — let’s see, that was Sam Parr 08 I believe — and told the police about it. Ms. Tanner and her private dick friend Percy. You may know them by now. Dr. Rabbid Baumbeer I’m talking about here. His corpse was discovered in a sewer over in Apple’s Orchard. I don’t go over there much any more because of it. And to think at the time it was known as the “Mild East” of [NWES City].
*Anyway*, have to run. It’s *so* nice to write you, and a bit relieving as well. I’ve thought about your work *so* much since it’s come to [NWES City] and also visited your own village of Collagesity back in the fall while doing further research on the murder. The newest gallery of yours in NWES, Bogota, still, um — well, still exploring that one. But the Boos gallery beside it is prim-o! I love how the interpretations flow from one collage to another in [Sunklands].
Toddles is urging me we need to go to the store. I promise to write later (!!!!).
Your fan and secret friend,
Alice L. Farrowheart the 5th
Alice Farrowheart looks down on the letter she just typed on her old timey computer-typewriter and wonders if she overdid it with the exclamation marks. Perhaps so, but, after all, this is very exciting. She’s talking directly to a maker now (!!!!!). Now if she just has the courage to send it.
“And something about *this* one. That man at the top with the flowy hair.”
“All right, child. I’ll mark it down for later inspection. Here, let me take another snapshot with my phone.”
Alice Farrowheart again wonders briefly if pictures are allowed in the gallery but reinforces to herself that she doesn’t care. The study of *synchronicity* trumps all, since it is a bridge-maker. Important term, and one she’s been using a lot in her journal lately. The Little Book of Synchronicities. She’ll worked on it when she gets back to the apartment. Along with playing with the belt again, hehe. She’s been experimenting for days.
“We’re done, gramma. That’s the last.”
“Good job. Let’s go home.” Alice wishes they could take the subway back but knows that’s a way off. Walking is good for the soul, though. The belt can wait.
“Where are you again, Toddles? I can see the green (right) and the gray (left) but you’re nowhere to be found. I need you to be *somewhere* — and just not in my head.”
“Behind the UFO,” the small child spouted in her cute-as-a-button voice. So wise for someone so little, but that’s the psychic part working its way in. She can also see into the 4th dimension and bend her vision around things.
Alice Farrowheart finally understood that her grandchild, speaking directly into her mind at the time, was behind the saucer centered collage in the middle of the room on the easel. She decides to move around it to examine the bigger collage more, framed by the green and gray figures she mentioned earlier and spanning two of the 4 walls. But — right or left?
“Choose right,” uttered the magical child, sensing her thoughts and spacial placement again. “Then left till you get to the umbrella. She wanted to emphasize green over gray for a particular reason. She had already told Alice the Pooh (bear) holding a red parasol and pulling a blue cart with a honey pot was exactly halfway between (Phil!).
“*There* you are, child. And there’s the umbrella tucked snug in the corner, just like you said. Not surprising of course.”
“Right between the two,” Toddles reinforced, into her sight and out of her mind, to Alice Farrowheart’s relief. The prescient toddler pointed to the doubly displaced green “T” at the bottom of a Telephone pole and elaborated the connection with Colona, the twin city of Teepot in the Confederation. A graphic representation of what she said to her grandma for now; more later:
We end with a front pic of the Red Umbrella gallery itself, returned to NWES City as of yesterday: