red and blue
“There’s no one there, honey.”
“Oh, but there *is*.”
Hooktip again 01
He was in a new place, highlighted by purple. Mushrooms all around.
He wakes up. “Witch dream,” he mutters, looking over.
“The cat dreams, you dream,” she says, already involved in her morning reading. Not good today. The Sun. No Moon in sight. “See? Itchy also stirs below you at the same time. I’m sorry: *Scratchy*. Do you remember Scratchy?”
I sit up, trying to remember how I got here. True, I was walking toward the place, then…”
“Trying to recall?” she guessed correctly. “I had to bring you here to replace Duncan. Duncan doesn’t need to return to these woods. His karma is done with it, George (ward) too — Buster be damned.”
I sat up more, straightened out my spine to aid my aching neck. That couch — not what I would have chosen to sleep on. Thanks witch! My day starts out not well. “Buster… Damm?” I reply, trying to get my bearings.
“Yeah, um, Tussock — his home of course — right next door. We’re in Hooktip. In the woods. I have a house here as well, but I keep cracking all the mirrors there. Forest is better when I’m in these kind of states. I seem to have the worse luck lately. And *here*…” she points down toward the cards. “The *Sun* of all things, the *opposite* of what I desire.”
“The Who?” I say back.
The witch, who is of course a new advancement of Alysha, even further beyond child now, looks over. Precisely what I would have said in your position, she realizes. They are one. And she also understands the reading is for him, not her. “How’s your neck?” she asks after turning over the next card. Maybe there’s hope for this day after all.
Hooktip again 02
“Let’s go play with The Diagonal,” she requests, getting up.
“36, 35: 100 less in each case than the ottoman at the center where Shelley seduced Tommy (Tailgate). Do you recall who else was seduced on a tailgate?”
“Sid?” I said, suddenly having omniscient author powers. Sid worked for Buster Damm in the Pot-D organization, unless it was visa versa. I also realized that the omniscient author of this here photo-novel, 29 in a series of nothing, had left a lot of choices open-ended. In one fork… well I guess Pot-D is the stable thing, the whole idea of protecting The Diagonal, which only numbers one now, at least on this continent (Heterocera). And this is where it all began — in the Rubi Woods extended to VHC City. The first 5 photo-novels were all about the continent before we — our extended family of core avatars — moved away from it starting in 6. And now we’re in a whole different hemisphere, East instead of West. I looked at the witch, wondering what direction *she* would choose. Does she live in a backwards world, a mirror to our own? Strange thought.
“You have everything you need here — on this spot. You can spot Shelley’s clock tower up toward the center of the sim. You can see my cabin in the woods over there. And over there (she turns): the Good Neighbors pylon marking where The Diagonal enters the sim in the first place. What more do you need? The Sun?”
Indeed it was beginning to rain. I realized my neck ached more because of the coming of such.
East or West? I guess I would go with West, then. She seemed to like it here.
(to be continued)
in da woods
She hung up her black hat and dress and boots. She put on her blue flower jeans and rose shirt and red canvas shoes, made for a kid. Because she was a kid again, or at least closer to such. Our friendly, lovely Alysha. And where was projected mate Axis-Windmill these days? Still in Neat Town talking to Kick-ass Boos about bigfoot, locally colored green and called mossmen? Actually the last time we checked in with him, he was in Bellisaria chatting with a painter rabbit about primary colors, specifically about blue and black and how one can change into another. Perhaps he wants to know because of Hatti’s witch hat, which she just hung up. He knows about the alchemical cemetery, the alchemetery or alcemetery if you will (his coinings). He knows he has a rival and he doesn’t have much time, this White fellow.
He doesn’t yet realize he’s also staring into a mirror.
“Whitehead, Mossmen,” he mutters, waking up again, but this time not in the cabin, at least in *that* one. Instead: Reality.
L is for Red 02
We couldn’t wait any longer…
(to be continued)
“I’m just saying she mentioned your name, Duncan; said you need to stay away from those woods and that your karma is done there, along with George’s.”
“Interesting,” he says back to me, still keeping one eye on the tulips, which he then notices that I notice and looks away — for a minute. I’ll check all that out later.
This is what she studies, Duncan, this *Rose* Wells. Boxes… cubes I suppose.
“Borneo?” He’d heard that name before. Something about corn.
The blue sphere appears. Duncan disappears. Duncan saw too much in the field! Field “on”, and then he was there — in Reality — beyond the 300 or starting with the 300. Fieldon town limits.
The 2 blue spheres were 2 1/2 years apart, meaning that they were opposite each other — in the garden representing our solar system or an Earth limited one, with The Sun in the center (19). And what about The Observer there, watching from a table on the edge of the property? Fortress: Duncan was warned not to go back, and that maybe rats were there, perhaps similar to the ones within the tulips that make them move in oh so mysterious ways.
He was trying to mark the way (to the Fortress) with well placed toys. But they were not allowed here? White moves on beyond Black (Duncan) with Red, with Red obviously equaling Indian Wells now, both Asian and American at once. White Mage, in this scenario, is merely Hidi again.
“Primary Rabbit?” he asks, back at the home with the mannequins out front.
“I think… I’m ready to move beyond Black.”
Bell is serial
“Yes, Homie.” So raspy. She was between compositions now, deciding what to play next at her beloved pink upright.
“Do we know anyone named Wells, as in well well well?” The internet search had rung a bell. “Indian Wells”, the name on several of his daughter’s records, the stuff he couldn’t stomach in the least. “Well Well Well, If It Isn’t Indian,” was a particular (comeback) album that stuck out for him. He set aside the pictures of donuts for just one minute and tried it.
“*Well, Homie, they were our next door neighbors for 15 years is all.”
“Yes, the musical family. The ones you couldn’t stand.”
“I can’t stand *any* of our neighbors.”
“Well you should get to know them better… obviously. They moved away I suppose, hmmm, about 5 years ago. Right before…” She stopped. She didn’t want to talk about Bartholomew and how he left in the middle of the night after declaring all of them 2 dimensional and unreal. He’d had enough. Now he’s sorry and wishes to return to the good graces of the father especially. But Homer would have none of it — sic Itchy the family dog on him if necessary to chase him away again. But Bartholomew is still trying, with new boss Alysha’s urging. Maybe it wasn’t worth it to keep knocking on and beating on and pleading through a front door that would remain locked, doorbell never rung. Because *Lisa* knew how to ring the bell, making their hearts sing. Wild thing remains ostracized, despite Lisa’s support. She’s in touch with Alysha as well; wonders about her change from black to red hair. My cousin dyed her hair red, she ponders one night while listening to the adored, atonal croonings of Indian Wells again on her pink record player upstairs, Primary Rabbit and a peculiar, sticky-outy potted plant between them. Made her wild as well… like Bart. She imagines embracing him again, pretending he is real and standing before her. The little yellow fellow, always smaller than her despite the age advantage. He told his father that he was going to straighten his life out, stop going in circles forever and ever and that he knew he was in a rut. But his father was too much like him and wouldn’t listen.
“I’m going to shut the computer off now,” he rather shouted over to Marg, who had started again. She stopped and imagined them switching places, she at his computer and he at her piano. What would *he* compose? Something like Indian Wells? Wouldn’t that be just.
Kick-ass Boos said to sit at the table with the Bigfoot book, so here he is. He picks up another book laying nearby by John Shaw Billings, which he quickly gathers from his reading was a librarian for New York city in the US of A, Earth.
Kick-ass Bogota, Boos’ brother, strolls into the bar. His brother said he’d “mark him” to make sure Axis-Windmill knew who it was.
Yup. That’s him!
“Grasshopper please, Bertha. Extra mint.”
“Coming right up, Ted.”
She said she didn’t mind but I’m not sure how she made it all the way over here in that position from upper Nautilus. Darn near 5 miles! Of course the different alien physiology allowed her to be balled up like that for a longer period of time. Humans would be turned into sardines. “Ruby, are you there?” I spoke down after opening the multicolored storage container which slipped through Grayling Airport that grey day in early May. “Ruby?”
“Yes,” she said in a watery voice, more than usual since she hadn’t used it in a number of days.
On the other side of her: Billie Jean Kidd; unseen to Alysha; checking to make sure herself that Ruby was okay after the grueling journey — grueling, again, to us humans if we had to do it. Ruby was fine. Being scrunched up like that helped her arthritic neck, actually. She caught up with her long behind self cleaning. She texted old friends with her mind in her otherwise idle body. She finally solved that math equation involving Dark Matter and the Milky Way and the Black Hole at the center of it all. She fell into the Black Hole for a while so she could dream. She woke up refreshed, pure and white as the driven snow. She texted more friends. She revised another equation. More self cleaning. She decided to grow hair and then decided against it, shaving it all off (with her mind, of course). She slept. She woke up. She slept. She woke up, did some more stuff. She slept. She: here.
“Is she okay? Is she damaged in any way?” Billie Jean Kidd knew that Alysha couldn’t hear her but she asked anyway, being nervous and momentarily forgetting her invisibility. She pried her eyes away from tested Ruby and moved them to Alysha, noticing the flowers on the faded blue jeans. “Oh,” she realized. But Alysha answered her anyway, talking to herself as well.
“Looks like she’s been to Jael. And Miccall: she’s a Tilist (!). Thought Martians where always Pentagonalists. And, just there (she checked another part of the rotating glowing blue cube before her): *mermaid*. And jellyfish!” This particular specimen was proving to be more complicated than promised. She’d have to complement The Master on his research as soon as she sees him again. Which should be yesterday’s tomorrow if today’s clock is right.
“In the big scheme of things,” he declared in his big voice, made for a tyrant, “the Earth and the Moon are the same size, although, true, the Sun remains considerably larger than either. We’re working on it.”
“The Sun too?” Alysha said by his side, following him around like a little puppy. The Master, she thinks excitedly, watching him walk tall to match his tall talk. But don’t call him that around Lena and Zach (!).
“Yes. Let’s move to Rose’s brother — 1/2 brother actually. The alien was a deflection of course. Two hearted green Martians are a dime a dozen where I’m from. We’ve solved their anatomy ages ago.”
“Marvelous,” Alysha cooed, looking into his pepper grey hair to match his eyes. And I wasted all that time cubing her and seeing what made her tick. The Master knew all along (!). He added this and that and that to her knowledge. She knows about the Man About Time now and what makes him tick as well. A man named Tick actually. Ironically. Oh joy, he’s speaking again.
“The birthday hat at the top,” he began after looking the “specimen” over. “Thoughts? Ideas?”
“Weelll,” Alysha tried, “I’d say it stands for the body itself, controls it like a Controller.”
“What happens if you remove the hat?”
The Master Blue Feather Douglas stared deep into her eyes, grey penetrating almond. Her mind is good! he thinks from his superior position. She could be next on my specimen list.
“A conundrum,” she spoke. “A riddle,” she said. “You… *can’t*,” she concluded.
“No, instead you have to merge it with another body.” Blue Feather Douglas was pleased. This was enough for today. She’d learn more tomorrow. Or whenever he wished.
(to be continued)
A triangle of stars, actually.
She’s connecting the dots again.
back in Horsa…
She rubbed her bare arms, trying to stay warm. About time to pull out that gray fleece jacket she likes so much, she thinks. Fall is here — finally. “Oh cheer up please, Bartholomew,” she said over to her employee, her roommate at the moment. “You know, I use to be a kid, just like you. I know what you’re going through.”
“Do you?” he answered dismissively. “Do you know what it’s like to go through life as a yellow? A cartoon, even? 2 dimensional? I had to escape.”
“I’m sure your father means well. Deep down.”
“What about your manifesto? How’s that going?”
“My *treatise*,” he corrects in his nasal way.
Indeed he had been working on it — hard. His sister was creating a complementary piece called “Cowabunga: Truth and Lies”. More scholarly, with proper footnotes. Bart(holomew) didn’t like footnotes; preferred a more direct approach to convey his feelings about the whole subject. His own attached treatise to the TILE Manifesto was called “Ay Carumba! I’m a Mouse!” Alysha could see right through it, having been a mouse for a while herself. Before the removal of Black. Bart didn’t really know what he was writing, although she did. And the same applied for Lisa in a lesser manner. She’d go over his newest material and make the appropriate edits after she returned from Blue Feather tonight. Very little chance that Blue Feather Douglas himself would show up again, though. Could be months, she figured. Years, even. But it was thrilling while it lasted!
(to be continued)
She liked multicoloreds but this was ridiculous.
The attack of the cubes. She knew who was behind it. Thank Gods he wouldn’t be showing back up for months, maybe years.
Kick-ass Bogota gets valuable information from an ur-parent and relays later to Axis-Windmill in Horns of Hatton.
“I’m trying to reclaim the messed up 5th. You know Messed Up, don’t you Kick-ass?”
“My *brother* does. A different Kick-ass…”
“… for a different season, yes. You are… unformed… yourself.”
Kick-ass Bogota thought about this for a minute, then said: “You have been uninformed about this. I am instead *uniformed*, as in decorated, as in ace pilot of the 1st World Wide Web War.” He knocks on his forehead with this, pure metal revealed by the clunks.
“Maybe,” he shot back quickly, then looked out the window at the surrounding chaos. Unformed, uninformed, uniformed. Brother Kick-ass would switch signs with him later in the night so he could talk more with Axis-Windmill at the Horns bar where they now meet regularly. Lichen Roosevelt is usually there, serving up drinks behind the bar. The Mann is *always* there. Taking notes, most likely. And who is that he spies (at the time) in the back. Green like him, at least in the shirt. And those apples…
“It’s time you got away don’t you think. You’re only *Kind of* Messed Up.”
Kind Of Messed Up takes a sip of his drink and mulls this over. Junbug does the same with her Bombs Away.
North Horns (Dollyhood)
“Nothing here,” he muttered. “Might as well be another Messed Up 05 for all it’s worth.”
I got a strong feeling that this is the night, Axis-Windmill.”
“Bigfeet,” he guessed, looking over at the tittering squirrels. They too knew more than him.
“Bigfoot yeah. Samsquanch.”
Axis-Windmill didn’t bother to correct him this time. There would be no Bigfeet or Mossmen or whatever they call them colloquially. Because he saw the giant green shoe fly away last night with all the little houses and even the umbrella centered windmill. They had succeeded in loading up and moving.
It’s time to bring a new character into the picture: Jennifer Lane, twin cousin to our Shelley Lane, right down to the all seeing umbrella eyes. She remembers the bombing, the underground, the… flight.
“Another one, sweetie?” Lichen Roosevelt asked from behind the counter, presently cleaning a glass, perhaps the one she would pour a new drink in for Jenny.
Grasshopper? she thought. No: too obvious.
“Just another stack of potatoes.”
“We can do it too. Go ahead and sit down, honey. Let’s talk.”
“I hear the Toasty O’s are very good here in the morning.”
“Talk,” she requested, not wanting to dilly dally around. “Spill.”
“Cube. We found the cube. In Hook Tender.”
Her mouth became an O. “My… *home*?”