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Vox Mentis
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #26
 

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Destiny bullshit and all that. Hard to argue with hardcoded data.

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03-18-2015 03:58 PM
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Papers
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #27
 

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Do what?

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03-18-2015 04:10 PM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
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Spoiler :
Unfortunately my tablet pen is borked. I will make up for the lack of pictures with lurid prose. I'll be able to update more consistently too.

What - I don't-

"Simple question, Nick. Why'd you do it?"

Do what do what what what-

"Borderline. As in, borderline on about eight different sets. I'd be guessing."

I don't know what you mean I've never done- I swear I've never- only do what I'm told- what I have to- never done anything except except this one time I knew a girl-

"There."

"Yeah. Yeah, okay."

Hand over mouth.

Pressure intensifying. Sucking.

Pulling out your eyeball.

No: Needle, withdrawing.

Shrieking, possibly.

Then the pain is gone. Hands pull you upward. You can't see. You weep for your poor mistreated eyeball. But it's still there. It's still there.

Blurry shapes loom in fog. "What," you say.

"Cograph mecidity niten colense," says the taller shape. "Hop on one foot."
(This post was last modified: 03-18-2015 06:29 PM by Douglas.)
03-18-2015 06:28 PM
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
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On the one hand it's probably to make sure they didn't destroy your motor functions. On the other hand fuck these guys they are awful.

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03-18-2015 06:50 PM
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Crowstone
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #30
squee~

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for.. the money..

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03-18-2015 07:00 PM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #31
 

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Whimbrel Wrote:On the one hand it's probably to make sure they didn't destroy your motor functions. On the other hand fuck these guys they are awful.

You narrow your eyes. I mean, fuck these guys, right? They shove shit through your eyes and ask you stupid questions and expect you to, what, dance for them now? Fuck no. You do nothing.

"Huh," says the shorter shape. "Maybe it is him."

~

They fill a sink with water and push your face into it. You surface, gasping. "Don't soak his clothes," says the tall man.

You are in a restroom. An airport. You came off the 4:05 PM from Chicago, to see your girlfriend Mel who would be waiting outside with her car to pick you up. The aisle seat between you and a more comfortable flying experience had been occupied by a large man in a loud Hawaiian shirt you couldn't bear to wake. At first, the airport restroom had appeared closed for cleaning, but the janitor removed the sign and you jogged towards it gratefully. You had reached the urinal, unzipped, experienced sweet relief.

Then the door had opened. A tall man in a long beige coat had come in. There were like half a dozen available urinals, you at one end of them, but the man picked the one next to you. Total breach of restroom etiquette. But you were never one to make a fuss. Moments passed and the man did not pee. You, emptying at high velocity, felt a tick of compassion. We've all been there, buddy. Then the door had opened again. A second man entered and locked the door.

You had put yourself back into your pants. You had looked at the tall man next to you, thinking - you almost laugh at this, in retrospect - that whatever was happening here, whatever specific awfulness was implied by a man entering a public restroom and fucking locking it, at least you and the tall man were in it together. At least it was two against one. Then you had realized Shy Bladder Man's eyes were calm and deep and kind of serene, really, but the key point there being calm as in not surprised about this situation whatsoever, and Shy Bladder Man had taken your head and rocketed it into the wall.

The the pain and questions.

"Need to get this blood out of his hair," says the short man. He peppers your face with paper towels. "His eye looks terrible."

"If they get close enough to see his eyes, we've got bigger problems." The tall man wipes his hands with a small white cloth, giving special attention to each individual finger. He's thin and tan-skinned and you're no longer finding his eyes quite so calm and serene. You're getting more of a cold and soulless sort of vibe. Like those eyes could watch horrible things and not look away. "So, Nick, you with us? You can walk and talk?"

"Fuck," you say, "urrrfffff." It doesn't come out how you'd like it to. Your head feels loose.

"Good," says the tall man. "So here's the deal. We need to get out of this airport in minimum time with minimum hassle. I want your cooperation with that. If I fail to receive it, I'm going to make things bad for you. Not because I have anything against you, really, but I'd like to have you motivated. Do you understand?"
03-18-2015 08:22 PM
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
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If you say you aren't going to cooperate they'll probably just knock you out right here. So, pretend to agree, then we'll bolt and make trouble at the first opportunity.

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03-18-2015 08:38 PM
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Crowstone
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #33
squee~

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>agree to fully cooperate! I mean, why not. What's the worse that could happen?

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03-19-2015 01:45 AM
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AgentBlue
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #34
that escalated quickly

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NOW dance. Make them think you're crazy. Lower their guard.

Let me out Stay safe inside | You're not kind | Ethics are overrated | What is life | Men are pigs | I'm so drunk | EAT ME NOW | Click clack fuck | Is this right Only money matters | Change my clothes | Little sun rising | One cat's future | Wax and wane | Dark times ahead
----
So very British / But then again | People are machines Machines are people | Oh hai there | There's no time
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Superhero 1920s noir | Multigenre Half-Life | Changing the future | Command line interface
Tu ventire felix? | Clockwork for eternity | Explosions in spacetime
03-19-2015 01:50 AM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #35
 

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(03-19-2015 01:50 AM)AgentBlue Wrote:  NOW dance. Make them think you're crazy. Lower their guard.

Clearly these guys aren't backing down. Time for extreme measures. You begin dancing slowly, mostly just hopping on one foot, like they wanted. You were never a great dancer, so you're willing to incorporate their suggestion.

The tall man rolls his eyes. "We're not idiots, Nick. Nice try though."

You stop. "Look, I'm not..." You search for the word. Rich? Kidnappable? "Anybody. I'm a carpenter. I make decks. Gazebos."

"Yes, that's why we're here, your exemplary work with gazebos. Look, you can drop the act. We know who you are. And they know who you are, and they're here, so let's get the fuck out while we can."

You take a moment to choose your words, because you get the feeling you're only going to have one more shot at this. "My name is Nick Parsons. I'm a carpenter. I have a girlfriend and she's waiting outside to pick me up. I don't know who you think I am or why you stuck a... a thing in my eye, but I'm nobody. I promise you I'm nobody."

The short man had been packing equipment into a brown satchel, and now he slings it around one shoulder and peers into your face. He has thinning hair and anxious eyebrows. Normally, you might have pegged him as an accountant or something.

"Tell you what," you say. "I'll just stay here. You can go, I'll stay here for twenty minutes, and then I'll forget all about you. It'll be like we never met."

The short man glances at the tall man.

"I am not the guy," you say. "I am not the guy."

"The problem with that little plan, Nick," says the tall man, "is that if you stay here, in twenty minutes you'll be dead. If you go to your girlfriend, who I'm sorry to say you can no longer trust, you'll be dead. If you do anything other than come with us now, quickly and cooperatively, again, I'm afraid, dead. It may not seem like it, but we are the only people who can save you from that." His eyes scan yours. "I can see, though, that you're not finding this that persuasive, so allow me to switch to a more direct method." He holds open his coat. Tucked against his side, nose down in a thigh holster, is a short, wide shotgun. Briefly you wonder how the hell he got a shotgun in an airport. "Come or I will shoot you through the fucking kidneys."

Crowstone Wrote:>agree to fully cooperate! I mean, why not. What's the worse that could happen?

Whimbrel Wrote:If you say you aren't going to cooperate they'll probably just knock you out right here. So, pretend to agree, then we'll bolt and make trouble at the first opportunity.

"Yes," you say. "Okay, you make a good point. I'll cooperate." The key is to et out of the restroom. The airport is full of security. Once you're out, a push, a yell, some running: That's how you'll escape.

"Nope," says the short man.

"No," says the tall man. "I see it. Dope him up."

~

A door opens. On the other side of it is a world of malformed color and muted sound, as if something's stuck in your ears, eyes, and possibly brain. You shake your head to clear it, but the world gets dark and angry and won't stay upright. The world doesn't like being shaken. You feel your feet sliding away from you on invisible roller skates and reach for a wall for support. The wall curses and digs its fingers into your arm and is probably not a wall. It is probably a person.

"You gave him too much," says the person.

"Safe than sorry," says another person. They are bad persons, you recall. They're kidnapping you. You feel angry about this, although in a technical kind of way, like taking a stand on principle. You try to reel in your roller skate feet.

"Jesus," mutters a person, the tall one with calm eyes. You don't like this person. You've forgotten why. Wait no. It's the kidnapping. "Walk."

You walk, resentfully. There are important facts in your brain but you can't find them. Everything is moving. A stream of airport people breaks around you. Everyone going somewhere. You had been going somewhere. Meeting someone. To your left, a bird twitters. Or a phone. The short man squints at a screen. "Rain."

"Where?"

"Domestic Arrivals. Up ahead." You find this idea amusing: rain in the terminal. "Do we know a Rain?"

"Yeah. Girl. New."

"Shit," says the short man. "I hate shooting girls."

"You get used to it," says the tall man.

A young couple passes, gripping hands. Lovers. The concept seems familiar. "This way," says the tall man, steering you into a bookstore. You come face-to-face with a shelf that says NEW RELEASES. Your feet keep skating and you put out a hand to catch yourself and feel a sharp pain.

"Problem?"

"Possibly nothing," murmurs the tall man, "or possibly Rain, passing behind us now, in a blue summer dress."

In glossy covers, a reflection skips by. You try and figure out what stabbed you. It was a loose wire in the NEW RELEASES sign. The interesting thing is that being stabbed is helping clear the fog in your head.

"Busiest part of any store, always the new releases," says the tall man. "That's what attracts people. Not the best. The new. Why is that, Nick, do you think?"

You prick yourself with the wire. It's too tentative, you can hardly feel it, so you try again, harder. This time a blade of pain sweeps through your mind. You remember needles and questions. Your girlfriends, Melinda, is out front in a white SUV. She's going to be in a two-minute parking bay; you had arranged that carefully. You're late, because of these guys.

Now's a good a time as any to try and make your move. What do you do?
03-19-2015 03:07 PM
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Crowstone
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #36
squee~

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i think the new releases are terrible and diminishing in quality every year, back in my day, the new releases were great, too bad they're now the old releases. alas, such is the inevitability of the passage of time

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03-19-2015 03:29 PM
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #37
 

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Ok, we can't try anything too obvious because they have at least one gun and seem perfectly willing to shoot you.
Don't look at the tall guy, they seem to be good at lie detecting, they might see you're getting clearheaded. Instead, look for the girl in the blue dress, try and catch her eye. If they get in a conflict with her, well, that's an opening.

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03-19-2015 07:02 PM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #38
 

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(03-19-2015 03:29 PM)Crowstone Wrote:  i think the new releases are terrible and diminishing in quality every year, back in my day, the new releases were great, too bad they're now the old releases. alas, such is the inevitability of the passage of time

(03-19-2015 07:02 PM)Whimbrel Wrote:  Ok, we can't try anything too obvious because they have at least one gun and seem perfectly willing to shoot you.
Don't look at the tall guy, they seem to be good at lie detecting, they might see you're getting clearheaded. Instead, look for the girl in the blue dress, try and catch her eye. If they get in a conflict with her, well, that's an opening.

Carefully looking around to try and catch a glimpse of the blue dress, you attempt to respond to the tall guy. But in a way that doesn't betray your less foggy state. "Mmmrrrffff." That'll work. You'll go with that.

Then you see it - a flash of blue, maybe thirty yards down the concourse. She must have passed right by and missed you. She's facing away, in the direction of her movement, so there's no catching her eye. Not stealthily, anyway.

"I think we're good," says the short man.

"Make sure." The short man moves away, in the direction the dress went. "Alright, Nick," says the tall man. "In a few moments, we're going to cross the hall and walk down some stairs. There will be a little circumnavigating of passenger jets, then we'll board a nice, comfortable twelve-seater. There will be snacks. Drinks, if you're thirsty." The tall man glances at you. "Still with me?"

Stealthy escapes seem to be off the menu. What do you do?
03-19-2015 07:46 PM
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #39
 

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Ok, now there's only one to deal with. Probably won't get a better chance, unfortunately. Smack him with the metal sign and leg it, the opposite way the short dude headed out.

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03-19-2015 08:04 PM
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Crowstone
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #40
squee~

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oh man, a free airplane ride? forget anything bad you've felt about these guys. What's a little eye horror compared to the price of a ticket? Make sure you thank these guys for their generosity once you're able to talk properly

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03-19-2015 11:09 PM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #41
 

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(03-19-2015 11:09 PM)Crowstone Wrote:  oh man, a free airplane ride? forget anything bad you've felt about these guys. What's a little eye horror compared to the price of a ticket? Make sure you thank these guys for their generosity once you're able to talk properly

For a moment, you consider your options. Tall Guy really did a good job selling the plane thing. Maybe they're not so bad after all?

Then you remember they stuck a rail spike through your eye and there's no guarantee they won't do other Frankenstein shit to you later and you'd rather avoid that thank you very much.

(03-19-2015 08:04 PM)Whimbrel Wrote:  Ok, now there's only one to deal with. Probably won't get a better chance, unfortunately. Smack him with the metal sign and leg it, the opposite way the short dude headed out.

In one swift movement you wrench the NEW RELEASES sign from its mounting bracket and introduce it to the tall man's face. Whatever drugs they put into you haven't completely gone away, though, and the two of you stumble into a cardboard display and go down in a tangle of beige coat and scattered books. Run, you think, and that does seem to be a solid idea. You find your feet and run out and to the right, towards any possible exit. In the glass you see a wild-eyed man and realize it's you. You hear yelps and alarmed voices, possibly the tall man getting up with his shotgun, but you don't turn around to check.

You stumble out into an ocean of bright frightened faces and open mouths. It's still hard to remember what you're doing. Your legs threaten to betray you, but the motion is good, helping to further clear your head. You see escalators and forge towards them. Your back sings with potential shotgun impacts, but the airport people are being really great about moving out of your way, practically throwing themselves aside, and you're grateful. You reach the elevators but your roller skate feet keep going and you fall flat on your back. The ceiling moves slowly by. The tiles up there are filthy. Like seriously disgusting.

You sit up, remembering Melinda. Also the shotgun. You grab the handrail to pull yourself up but your legs go in opposite directions and you tumble down the rest of the way. Body parts phone in complaints from faroff places. You rise. Sweat runs into your eyes. Because the head fog isn't confusing enough, you need blurred vision. But you can see light, which means exit, which means Melinda, so you run on. Someone shouts. The light grows. Frigid air bursts around you as if you've plunged into a mountain lake and you suck it into your lungs. Snow. It's snowing. Flakes like tiny stars.

You're outside... what do you do?
03-20-2015 01:42 PM
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #42
 

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Locate girlfriend!

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03-20-2015 04:29 PM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #43
 

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(03-20-2015 04:29 PM)Whimbrel Wrote:  Locate girlfriend!

Orange buses. Parking bays. The two-minute spaces are just a little further. You almost collide with a trolley-laden family and the man tries to grab your jacket but you keep running and it's starting to make sense, now, running; you're starting to remember how to coordinate the various pieces of your body, and you throw a glance over your shoulder and a pole runs into you.

You taste blood. Someone asks if you're okay, some kid pulling earbuds out of his hair. You stare. You don't understand the question. Your thoughts have fallen out. You grope for them and find Melinda. You raise your body like a wreck from the deep and shove the kid aside and ride forward on a crest of the kid's abuse. You finally see it, Melinda's car, a white fortress on wheels with VIRGINIA IS FOR LOVERS on the rear window. Joy drives your steps. You wrench open the handle and fall inside. You've never been so proud. "Made it," you gasp. You close your eyes.

"Nick?"

You look at Melinda. "What?" You begin to feel unsure, because her face is strange. And then it comes to you, in a fountain of dread that begins somewhere unidentifiable and ends in your testicles: you should not be here. You should not have led men with guns to your girlfriend. That was the wrong thing to do.

"Nick, what's wrong?" Her fingers come at you. "Your nose is bleeding." There's a tiny furrow in her brow, one you know so well.
03-20-2015 04:54 PM
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Coldblooded
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #44
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"Drive, just drive! I'll explain later!"

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03-20-2015 05:21 PM
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
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Hahhaha we have no idea what's going on but most importantly we need to leave, like, now. Very now.

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03-20-2015 05:22 PM
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Crowstone
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #46
squee~

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drive drive gooooo

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03-20-2015 05:56 PM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #47
 

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(03-20-2015 05:21 PM)Coldblooded Wrote:  "Drive, just drive! I'll explain later!"

(03-20-2015 05:22 PM)Whimbrel Wrote:  Hahhaha we have no idea what's going on but most importantly we need to leave, like, now. Very now.

(03-20-2015 05:56 PM)Crowstone Wrote:  drive drive gooooo

"Long story, ran into a pole, no idea what's going on, just drive!"

She fumbles with the keys as she reaches for the ignition. "Okay, okay, just... stay still. Oh my god. I'll take you to a hospital or something. Alright? Are you okay?"

"Mmf." You feel relief. Weight steals through your body. You wonder if it's okay to slide into unconsciousness. It seems out of your hands now. Melinda will drive to safety. This car is a tank; you'd mocked it before, because it's so big and she's so tiny but they're equally aggressive, and now it's going to save you. You might as well close your eyes a moment.

When you open them, Melinda is looking at you. You blink. You have the feeling you've fallen asleep. "Why..." You sit up.

"Shhh."

"Are we moving?" You're not moving. "Why aren't we moving?"

"Just stay in your seat, until they get here," Melinda says. "That's the important thing."

You turn in your seat. The glass is fogged over. You can't see what's out there. "Melinda. Drive. Now."

She tucks a wisp of hair behind one ear. She does that when she's remembering something. You could see her across a room, talking to somebody, and know she's relating a memory. "Remember the day you met my parents? You were freaking out because you thought we were going to be late. But we weren't. We weren't late, Nick."

You rub condensation from the window. Through the whiteout, men in brown suits jog towards you. "Drive! Mel! Drive!"

"This is just like then," she says. "Everything's going to be fine."
03-20-2015 06:32 PM
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Crowstone
 RE: Vox Mentis
Post: #48
squee~

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well if she's not going to drive, YOU WILL
awkwardly attempt to drive the car from the passenger seat, it's the only way!

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03-20-2015 07:06 PM
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Whimbrel
 RE: Vox Mentis
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Yeah, we weren't late because both of us got the date wrong and we arrived a day early! It was a huge disaster, Mel!

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03-20-2015 09:16 PM
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Douglas
 RE: Vox Mentis
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(03-20-2015 09:16 PM)Whimbrel Wrote:  Yeah, we weren't late because both of us got the date wrong and we arrived a day early! It was a huge disaster, Mel!

"Yeah, that was because we fucked up the date and showed up early! You know how your parents hate early guests. That was one of the most embarrassing days of my life, Mel!" Melinda continues to stare at you.

(03-20-2015 07:06 PM)Crowstone Wrote:  well if she's not going to drive, YOU WILL
awkwardly attempt to drive the car from the passenger seat, it's the only way!

Seeing no other option, you lunge across her, groping for the ignition. "Where are the keys?"

"I don't have them."

"What?"

"I don't have them anymore." She puts a hand on your thigh. "Just sit with me a minute. Isn't the snow beautiful?"

"Mel," you say. "Mel."

There's a flash of dark movement and the door opens. Hands seize you. You fight the hands, but they are irresistible, and pull you out into the cold. You throw fists in all directions until something hard explodes across the back of your head, and then you're being borne on broad shoulders. Some time seems to pass in between, because it's darker. Pain rolls through your head in waves. You see blacktop and a flapping coattail. "Fuck," says someone, with frustration. "Forget the plane. They can't wait for us any longer. We screwed around with this idiot for too long."

"Forget the plane? Then what?"

"Other side of those buildings, there's a fire path, take us to the freeway."

"We drive? Are you kidding? They'll close the freeway."

"Not if we're fast."

"Not if we're...?" says the shorter man. "This is fucked! It's fucked because you wouldn't leave when I said!"

"Shush," says the tall man. They stop moving. The wind blows awhile. Then there's some running, and you hear an engine, a car stopping. "Out," says the tall man, and you're manhandled into a small vehicle. The short man comes in behind you. A disco ball dangles from the mirror. A row of stuffed animals with enormous black eyes smile at you from the dash. A blue rabbit holds a flag on a stick, championing some country you don't recognize.

The engine revs. "How'd it go with the girlfriend, Nick?" the tall man says. He steers the car around a pillar marked C3, which you recognize as belonging to the parking garage. "Are you ready to consider that maybe we know what we're doing?"

"This is a mistake," says the short man. "We should stay on foot."

"The car is fine."

"It's not fine. Nothing is fine." He has a short, angry-looking submachine gun in his lap. You had somehow not noticed that until now. "Wolf was on us from the start. They knew."

"They didn't."

"Austen-"

"Shut up."

"Austen fucked us!" says the short man. "She's fucked us and you won't see it!"

The tall man aims the car at a collection of low hangars and warehouse-like buildings. As you draw nearer, the wind picks up, flinging ice down the funnels made by their walls. The car shakes. You, jammed between the two men, bounce between one and the other.

"This car sucks," says the short man.

A small figure looms out of the gloom ahead. A girl, wearing a blue dress. Her hair dances in the wind, but she is standing very still.

The short man leans forward. "Is that Rain?"

"I think so."

"Hit her."

The engine whines. The girl grows in the windshield. Flower on her dress, you see. Yellow flowers.

"Hit her!"

"Ah, fuck," says the tall man, almost too quietly to hear, and the car begins to scream. The world shifts. Weight forces you sideways. Things move beyond the glass. A creature, a behemoth with searing eyes and silver teeth, falls upon you. The car bends and turns. The teeth are a grill, you realize, and the eyes headlights, because the creature is an SUV. It chews the front of the car and roars and shakes and runs into the brick wall. You put your arms around your head, because everything is breaking.

You hear groans. Shuffling. The ticking down of the engine cooling. You raise your head. The tall man's shoes are disappearing through a jagged hole where the windshield had been. The short man is fumbling with his door handle, but in a way that suggests that he's having trouble getting his hands to do what he wants them to. The interior of the car is oddly shaped. You try to push something off your shoulder, but it turns out to be the roof.

The short man's door squeals and jams. The tall man appears on the other side and wrenches it open. The short man crawls out and looks back at you. "Come on."
03-21-2015 02:17 AM
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