[Burichan] [Futaba] [Nice] [Pony]  -  [WT]  [Home] [Manage]

Report completed threads!

[Catalog View] :: [Archive] :: [Graveyard] :: [Rules] :: [Discussions] :: [Wiki] :: [Discord]

[Return] [Entire Thread] [Last 50 posts] [Last 100 posts]
Posting mode: Reply
Name (optional)
Email (optional, will be displayed)
Subject    (optional, usually best left blank)
File []
Embed (advanced)   Help
Password  (for deleting posts, automatically generated)
  • How to format text
  • Supported file types are: GIF, JPG, MP3, MP4, PNG, SWF, WEBM
  • Maximum file size allowed is 25600 KB.
  • Images greater than 250x250 pixels will be thumbnailed.

File 169032255856.png - (264.17KB , 550x500 , 000.png )
1068906 No. 1068906 ID: 11f77a

NSFW for nudity and possible casual lewds
Chapter 1: https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/823974.html
Chapter 2: https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/1059064.html
Wiki: https://questden.org/wiki/Calliope
Expand all images
No. 1068907 ID: e5709d

Once upon a sex scene...
No. 1068908 ID: 11f77a
File 169032268304.png - (259.25KB , 550x500 , 001.png )

Wow. You really can’t taste it at all.

Although sometimes...you get the aftertaste on the back of your throat and it makes you wanna ‘blugh’. It needs more Fresca. You don’t know when it’ll kick in--but it’ll probably come in gradually. You’ve never done this before.
No. 1068909 ID: 11f77a
File 169032270822.png - (276.90KB , 550x500 , 002.png )

Jason: Hnnk! Guh! Ugh, I can still taste it a lil. How do people drink this stuff? Like...for the first time. AND they decide to just keep drinking it?

Len: Yeah, ‘you just keep trying to stomach it. You just get used to it. The vodka ought to hit soon.

Len: You feeling that buzz yet?
No. 1068910 ID: b1805a


Vodka and soda? Ugh, probably the cheap stuff. Likely it has that wondrous quality of nail polish mixed with paint thinner.
No. 1068915 ID: dd3fe0

So, cheap ways to get drunk. Not bad, all considering, if that's the goal. Why, exactly, is it a current goal to drink those drinks which are generally categorized as cheap ways to get drunk?
No. 1068916 ID: 273c18

Do you remember the girl from the orange dream?
No. 1068986 ID: 44def3

That's what the soda is for! To drown out the taste until you stop caring.
No. 1068992 ID: 8f9bc4

Generally it's because of their buddy named Len who doesn't care if he's ruining their life. He's refilling their glass, so it's only polite.
No. 1069007 ID: 11f77a
File 169040114130.png - (225.76KB , 550x500 , 003.png )

>Vodka and soda? Ugh, probably the cheap stuff.
>That’s what the soda is for! To drown out the taste [...]
I wouldn’t know. I’ve never tried alcohol before. Maybe a sip of Guinness with my dad in a restaurant and even that was too bitter. My brother replaced the vodka our mom had back home with water.

We’re at our dad’s vacation home. Actually we’re only here to work at a hospital for the summer: cleaning and maintenance. It’s sort of my first job.

>Why exactly, is it a current goal?
Somehow my brother convinced me to just experience being drunk for the first time. I..I’m only 14 (my birthday is in another 2 months so just say I’m 15), and my brother turned 16 in April. I dunno; he seems to have a lot of friends to hang with. He may be used to it. As for me, I usually stay home after school. I don’t have many adventures to cause trouble in the neighborhood. So there’s a lot I’m missing out on. I mean...I ought to try it just once, right?

>Do you remember the girl from the orange dream?
I don’t know any orange girl. Nah.
No. 1069008 ID: 11f77a
File 169040116355.png - (245.61KB , 550x500 , 004.png )

I stomach another gulp. I don’t taste it this time which is kind of a relief. I’m starting to get sick of Fresca though.

Jason: So when does it, ya know, *urp* happen?

Len: Your head will feel a lil’ heavy. That’s normal. But you’ll find things real funny soon. Like... funnier than usual.

Jason: Oh really? Like what? I don’t just laugh randomly at anything.

Len: ...

Jason: ...

Len: Penis!

Jason: Heeeeh-heh-heh heh.

I know he’s getting drunk too. He still tells me to keep drinking.

Len: Shhit, man. What do ya wanna do once we get wasted?

Our vacation home is sort of in the woods. There’s a canal in our backyard where dad rents out dock space for boat owners. People can store their boats on his yard for winter and repair.
No. 1069009 ID: 61355a

Try to do something harmless that you're normally good at, like a video game.
No. 1069023 ID: 8f9bc4

Hoooomewooooork yeeeeaahhhh
No. 1069047 ID: dd3fe0

Try something creative! Write ribald poetry! Like dirty limericks or clerihew or epigrams!
No. 1069063 ID: 06b50a

Don't go out in the docks, not a good idea for being drunk first time, it messes with your ability to swim.
No. 1069071 ID: 44def3

Yeah. Is beer pong an option? Or vodka soda pong I guess.
No. 1069097 ID: f914a5

Surely going for a swim at the docks while plastered won't result in a tragic backstory. But just in case, perhaps watching a good bad movie instead?
No. 1069110 ID: 11f77a
File 169050557158.png - (217.56KB , 550x500 , 005.png )

>Hoooomewooooork yeeeeaahhhh
It’s summer, I aint got homework. Just regular work where I wake up at five in the morning.

Jason: We could write something funny. Make dirty limericks or something.

Len: The fuck, Jase? This is what you would do when drunk? You’re gonna stay a virgin forever.

Jason: Ha. Ha. Right. Sure. Uh... Maybe video games then?

Len: Come oooon, don’t be a pussy. Are you ever going to venture out of your own home? What games do you even have--don’t you only have two for your Playstation?

Jason: I think Resistor: Caprinekin is all I have for co-op.

Len: Whatever. Maybe later, then. You need to move around; really experience it.

He tugs my arm.

Len: Remember when mom bought all those soda cans--like--fifteen crates from a deal at the grocers? Let’s smash some in the garage! Or just... run around outside on the grass! Break bottles and shit.

Jason: Well..alright. I just don’t want to be near the docks. I don’t want to fall in.

Len: You’ll be fiiiine, dude. Stop worrying. We’ll be on the grass.
No. 1069111 ID: 11f77a
File 169050561716.png - (166.20KB , 550x500 , 006.png )

I seem to just... follow him.

Everything’s swirling a little. It got a bit brighter outside than I expected. Funny, I feel the effects in my head but I think I can beat this. I can try to remain completely aware of myself.

Yeah I can be a functional drunk. Watch me!

It’s just feels like my head’s been upside down for a while. It’s not so bad if this is what it’s like.
No. 1069112 ID: 11f77a
File 169050563472.png - (251.52KB , 550x500 , 007.png )

Len: Come on! Let’s chill in Farley’s boat! He’ll be cool about it.

He’s beckoning me to the one currently on land--propped up by concrete blocks and pivots. There’s a ladder to get there.
No. 1069130 ID: e51896

climb on up!
No. 1069134 ID: 44def3

Should be fine as long as you don't rock the boat.
No. 1069150 ID: b1805a


It's so little. Like, what is there gonna be to see other than the steering bit?
No. 1069292 ID: 15a025

Climb up, get all the way up on the roof of the boat!
No. 1069392 ID: 11f77a
File 169075749472.png - (215.37KB , 550x500 , 008.png )

Jason: What’s there gonna be to see other than the steering bit anyway?

Len: Oh gee. You’re right. Guess it’s a dumb idea. Woowee. Just a steering bit. So jealous you have such foresight to not try anything in your life... Why even come here to work when you can be safe at home doing nothing? Gee.

Len: This is why you’re gonna live with mom until you’re 60, ya know. Just go places, man. Who cares where you’ll end up--you’ll find something to do. Now come on, just do it!

I climb up after him. I feel gravity pulling down on my head as I step on each rung. Perhaps it’s my perception being a little weird but the boat does seem pretty short from where I’ve stood.

I’m on the deck and the height causes a little vertigo. The boat rocks a little but I think it’s sturdy. Still, with how the drunkenness waves over my head it really does feel like we’re in the water sometimes. I have to sit down for a bit.

Len: How’re ya feelin’ so far, huh?

He grins; he’s amused by me. I haven’t even done anything yet.

Jason: I’m..I’m good. Nothing exciting yet I guess.
No. 1069393 ID: 11f77a
File 169075757812.png - (302.03KB , 550x500 , 009.png )

>get all the way up on the roof of the boat!
I think he knew I would get woozy from the height. He’s watching me like I’m some kind of monkey or something--I’m sure of it. I’ll show him how much I don’t give a shit.

I start climbing some more.

Len: What the- heh heh. Where’re ya going, man?

Jason: What’s it look like? I’m climbing on top of the roof! You can stay here if you wanna.

Len: That’s cool. That’s cool. Let me know what you find up there--heh.

It took a bit to figure it out, but I heave on top top and roll onto my back. Now I can see all, hear all. Feels a little more windy up here--but it’s probably my imagination. I don't really want to stand. It’s a fairly quiet property; there are people living in some mobile homes not too far away, perhaps I can see a neighbor on their porch. Farley doesn’t seem to be around at the moment.

Len is quiet for a bit. I hear something flicking, but he yells underneath me.

Len: Ya liking it up there?
No. 1069394 ID: 8f9bc4

licking it heh hehh
No. 1069397 ID: e51896

Maybe you'll like it more if you're even higher. Want to climb that tree near the boat? can you reach a nearby sturdy branch to climb up on from atop that boat?
No. 1069399 ID: dd3fe0

Let's not climb TOO much. There's nothing to DO on the roof of things.
No. 1069401 ID: e51896

except maybe suntan
No. 1069430 ID: 8f9bc4


What's a suntan? Everyone's covered in fur.
No. 1069439 ID: 44def3

It's definitely peaceful but I don't think he's interested in that.
No. 1069442 ID: 273c18

Are you afraid of heights? Maybe you should get back down. With a little help.
No. 1069609 ID: fc8ab3

It's honestly kind of nice. No reason not to stay there for a while.
No. 1069617 ID: 11f77a
File 169100003058.png - (232.49KB , 550x500 , 010.png )

I’m thinking about climbing higher but I was already shaking from being this far up. The tree near the boat doesn’t really have many branches to make it easy. I don’t want to break a leg either so I’m being still for now.

I just climbed up here on impulse, really. It’s a bit nice up here, in a way. Len breaks the silence though.

Len: Hey. Remember when that stray dog came by here for, like, a week--and he just left when we returned from work one day?

Jason: Yeah. I kinda wish he stayed. We kept feeding him and all. I wonder if he’s fine.

Len: He’s probably got some disease in the woods by now.

Wait... I smell somethin’...
No. 1069618 ID: 11f77a
File 169100006205.png - (259.78KB , 550x500 , 011.png )

I look over the lip of the roof and see Len with a weed pipe.

Len: What. You act like I aint smoked pot before?

Jason: Is that why you wanted to be in Farley’s boat?

Len: I could do it anywhere. We’re just hanging out.

Len: Have you tried it yet? May as well if you’re gonna be drunk for the first time.

>Maybe you’ll like it more if you’re even higher.
Uhhmm... wait. That’s totally not what I think that meant.
No. 1069619 ID: b1805a


Man, slang is weird. Yeah, ok, why not.
No. 1069621 ID: 3e88ae

This isn't cut with anything, is it? It's just pot?
No. 1069623 ID: f2320a

Drunk is enough for me dont want to mess with fire
No. 1069634 ID: 1371b2

Naaah I got something better-
Lick your thumb, then write with it on the boat roof ‘weed boat!’
No. 1069639 ID: 6fec12

nah man, for one this is the first time you're drunk, doing weed would just make it the first time you're crossfaded and that's a different and more potent thing. and you also need to figure out how to get down from up there and being crossfaded would make that even harder than it already is. pass on it, just lay on top and take the world in

definitely label this thing the weed boat though
No. 1069641 ID: 8f9bc4

I mean pot is cool and all but how're you supposed to enjoy a buzz if you got a buzz? DOuble buzz is like buzz bazz... bazzd. Hehheh.
No. 1069660 ID: 44def3

Being crossfaded is a blast but you're not doing great with just drinking yet. Maybe compromise with some more booze? If you can find a way down to get it.
No. 1069735 ID: 11f77a
File 169118520341.png - (282.92KB , 550x500 , 012.png )

As we’re talking I trace ‘weed boat!’ on the roof. There’s some dirt and grime because it definitely needs a wash (and it’s been under a tree for months). I wonder how long it’ll be there—probably til next rainfall.

>Yeah, ok, why not.
>don’t want to mess with fire
>being crossfaded is a blast but you’re not doing great with just drinking yet.
>doing weed would just make it the first time you’re crossfaded and that’s a different and more potent thing.
I slowly come down from the roof before I’m further in my buzz. I misjudge how far the floor was but I don’t stumble.

Jason: Uhm... I mmean. Isn’t it bad to mix weed and alcohol?

Len: Only if you really binge on it. It’s fine, dude. Just a bit of moderation.

Jason: Ssstill, I oughta pass.

Len: Alright fine, fine, suit yourself.

Len: You’ll be smoking it eventually, I’m sure of it. You’ll grow to like it.
There’s not a whole lot else we talk about. Usually work stories. Funny coworkers. My brother actually works on outside maintenance, garden stuff and mowing around the hospital. I was stuck inside hauling trash and dirty soiled linens this week.

Len: H-Hey. Heh. On my way back from the store I noticed a dead cat across the road--we should go check that out.

Jason: Across the road?

Len: Well... driveway I guess. We don’t live on a highway. You know to look both ways, right?

Jason: *urp* Yeah. I guess.

Len: Le’mee take a few more puffs then.
No. 1069736 ID: 11f77a
File 169118526064.png - (192.89KB , 550x500 , 013.png )


Jason: Well. It’s a dead cat. I guess.

Len: Not much to it, not like its organs are everywhere.

Jason: Yeah.

Len: Yeah.

Len: Well I didn’t know what to expect. Let’s go play your video games. Got any co-op?

Jason: Dude, I told you what games I have.
No. 1069737 ID: 11f77a
File 169118532568.png - (164.05KB , 550x500 , 014.png )

Len: I don’t fuckin’ remember. Come on.

He leaves. There are a couple of cars that zoom past but he’s already reaching the other side. It’s like he’s oblivious to traffic.

Jason: Shit. Hold on a second, Leonard! Just wait!

Not-a-highway my ass. This road feels very wide. I mean, we live on it, I guess I never noticed how wide it was on foot. There are a couple cars approaching but they’re all far away--
No. 1069738 ID: 11f77a
File 169118535417.png - (271.98KB , 550x500 , 015.png )

I think I can keep going without having to worry about them catching up to me...
No. 1069740 ID: 8f9bc4

No. 1069742 ID: e5709d

Go limp
No. 1069761 ID: 44def3

The alcohol takes care of that hopefully
No. 1069762 ID: dd3fe0

Jump so you end up on TOP of the hood, not crushed under the wheels of the horrifically unsafe truck!
No. 1069763 ID: 3d8dbf

Oh! I think I actually know what to do in this situation, i was actually taught this on tv long ago.

I heard once if a car is about to hit you, and you have no time to dodge, you have to jump towards the top of the hood of the car, because it'll be a lot worse if you get hit and dragged under the car. It's better to have the car swoop you upwards on the hood. Keep your leg closest to the car up, dont put weight on it. When you get on the hood of the car, protect your head with your arms so that if you possinly hit the windshield, you'll minimize damage to the head.

Keep in mind you'll still get hurt from the car and will still have to go to the hospital, but doing this will at least raise your chances of survival and hopefully wont break more bones than it would if any.
No. 1069810 ID: 15a025

No. 1069919 ID: 11f77a
File 169143997590.png - (244.37KB , 550x500 , 016.png )


What the fuck do I do?!

Jump! Just jump! I think I remember a video—

I jump! I just fucking jump up and backwards! I’m waiting for my legs to go bye-bye. But I’ll live. God, I hope. I’ll smash the hood at least and go over.
No. The car zooms on by no problem. I don’t think I heard any brakes. You’d think they’d slam the brakes. What the fuck, dude?
No. 1069920 ID: 11f77a
File 169144003489.png - (205.24KB , 550x500 , 017.png )

Everything’s fine..?

I don’t know how I managed to jump far away but... I’m not even hurt--except for a few scrapes. No other cars are coming either. It takes a moment to register what happened. My brother calls to me by the mailbox.

Len: Uh, you coming?

Jason: What?!

Len: Dude, are you lost on the road?

Jason: You didn’t just fucking see that?

Len: What.

Jason: I almost fucking died! You seriously didn’t fucking see that car almost hitting me?

Len: Huh? Uh--You weren’t anywhere near that car, dude. You were still in the other lane, you drunk. You stopped on the yellow line.

Len: You had a full three seconds before it would’ve passed you anyway. You could’ve kept walking fine.

Jason: I was right in front of it, dickwad! I could’ve died!

Len: Sure buddy, okay.

Jason: Screw you. I’m going back in the house...
No. 1069924 ID: 242eec

You sure you can make it to the house on your own while drunk?
No. 1069925 ID: f2320a

First see if you can read the number plate
Yeah this does not feel good ypur brother dismissing you nearly dying that "uh" sounds like bullshitting
No. 1069947 ID: e51896

Consider your both drunk, and he's probably high right now. both your senses are out of wack, so whether he's wrong or right, cut him some slack.

Still, tell him this is getting stupid and you want out.
No. 1069948 ID: 8f9bc4

Woah woah wait remember you're drunk. Drunk means thoughts are different. It must've been the vodka that made you think the car was that close to you. That's... how vodka works, right? Yeah, yeah that's gotta be how it works.

Stupid vodka dream car making you look stupid in front of your brother.
No. 1069955 ID: f88c45

Doesn't matter what the truth is, the lack of concern sucks. Just go back to the house.
No. 1070134 ID: 11f77a
File 169181092695.png - (235.93KB , 550x500 , 018.png )

>First see if you can read the number plate
I didn’t think of that. By the time I dust myself off it’s already too far down the thruway. It’s gone.

>Both your senses are out of wack
>It must’ve been the vodka that made you think the car was that close.
I guess... but I don’t know what to believe right now. I’m alive so that’s what’s important. Still, my brother is quite dismissive. He’s getting sloppier in his steps so I think we ought to go in the house.
We’re back in the living room on the couch. I’m still a bit pissed from the near-miss on that car. Least when I’m drunk I can still play games adequately. Len sucks at co-op.

Jason: Man, I could’ve died.

Len: It wasn’t that bad, man. You’re wanting attention at this point.

Jason: Man, fuck you. I know what I saw.

Len: Sure sure.

Len: You hungry yet? What are we gonna eat?

Jason: I don’t know. Boil some hotdogs I guess.

Len: You should make dinner for once. It’s always been either me or dad.

Jason: Whatever.
No. 1070135 ID: 11f77a
File 169181102041.png - (144.81KB , 550x500 , 019.png )

Len: Hey... Jase.

Jason: Hmm?

Len: You ever think... like...

Len: Like...

Len: Like the world ends when you die?

Jason: Whoa. What? Huh?

Len: Like, if you died, would I cease to exist without you witnessing me?

Jason: Dude, lol. What the fuck.
No. 1070141 ID: e51896

Tell him that's like asking if your life is just a dream. but also let him know that reoccurring dreams do happen.
tell him you think when you die, it'll be just like it was before you were born: just, going on into infinity of calm nothingness with no senses until something happens again.
No. 1070144 ID: 8f9bc4

Nah man, solipsism is a bankrupt philosophy.

No. 1070149 ID: f88c45

Obviously not or the world would have already ended. Unless it did and this is some sort of simulation. But that's even less sensible.
No. 1070150 ID: 273c18

"I think therefore I am"
No. 1070156 ID: b531fa


It's not even proper philosophy! It's just crappy intellectual masturbation. It's completely unfalsifiable, anti-empirical, encourages sociopathic behavior, paradoxical with regards to communication (if you believe it, why discuss it with others?), has no utility, does not help with everyday experience, and encourages delusional thinking!

As far as simulation hypothesis, that also has a ton of similar problems! Even the narrower ancestral simulation hypothesis version has issues with falsifiability and determinacy, infinite regression issues, lack of utility, and on and on!
No. 1070160 ID: 8f9bc4


Yeah, that.

Also you'd know if you were just imagining your brother.
No. 1070163 ID: b1805a


Close your eyes and ask him if he's still there. It's not like he's going to literally disappear if you aren't looking at him.

(We already tried that on the boat, technically, when we weren't looking at him)
No. 1070175 ID: 15a025

"If a tree falls and no-one's there to hear it, does it make a sound?"
No. 1070180 ID: dd3fe0


THAT'S just a stupid definition and language issue, not a big philosophical conundrum! Does it produce sound waves through the air and ground vs does it produce the detected subjective experience of auditory feedback!

The universe STILL EXISTS when we aren't there to believe in it, but that doesn't mean that being present to experience the universe is of no utility or worth or value!
No. 1070188 ID: 1371b2

I feel like an excellent counter-argument, depending on where he goes with this is:
“And what makes you so important that the world is going to end with you versus all the other people who already lived and died?”
No. 1070191 ID: 8f9bc4


Simple answer to that is they didn't.
No. 1070194 ID: dd3fe0


No, that actually isn't the simple answer. It's the more complex answer. This is how ideas like the simulation hypothesis and solipsism fail Occam's Razor. What's more likely: that there's a vast conspiracy with pseudo-real people being generated by some powerful group to make it so that only one or a few people aren't NPC's, or that one guy is full of shit and thinks the world in front of him isn't real, despite all evidence to the contrary?
No. 1070197 ID: a7a180

Want to find out?
No. 1070203 ID: 8f9bc4


Just because Boltzmann brains are more likely doesn't mean that's the case. But it doesn't matter what's more likely. It's the same either way. You're here, and you can't be anywhere else, or anyone else.
No. 1070204 ID: 11f77a
File 169197369884.png - (161.83KB , 550x500 , 020.png )

Jason: I mean we’re not main characters, are we? Otherwise the world would’ve ended already. You’d think that’d happen already with the millions dying every day.

Jason: Not counting aliens.

Jason: Plus I’d know if I was imagining you.

Len: Yeah but, maybe there’s a universe for each person… or something. How uh... How would you even know your purpose isn’t to just... just to exist for someone else?

Jason: I mean--you know--I think therefore I am. I know I exist because I can’t doubt I don’t.

Len: Maybe it’s how us NPCs are hardwired or given a past that we think we know.

Jason: Assuming I’m a ‘protagonist’ then--isn’t it a bit selfish?

Len: Only if you think you can do whatever you want. Doesn’t mean, uhm, there are no consequences, or plot armor. Your story could end short. Thus, everyone blinks out of existence when you can no longer observe.

Jason: Riiight. And if I close my eyes and can’t see or hear you you’ll disappear for good?

Len: You still have object permanence, bro. You know I’m somewhere. Besides, I meant whether it all goes away when you’re dead.

Jason: You’re high. Shut up.
No. 1070205 ID: 11f77a
File 169197372395.png - (162.87KB , 550x500 , 021.png )


I hadn’t realized how fast time has gone. It’s just after 8:00 in the morning. I’ve been reading more than the intro but only skimming around. It’s a little confusing when I skip several chapters ahead without much context--so that’s why I’ve been analyzing the beginning pretty closely.

The next chapter takes place a few years later when Jason is 18.

I’m sure Emmylou will be working all day at Brooks. According to the past few days my journey has been starting with Brooks → Band → and maybe/maybe not Silenus.

I’ll certainly be reading this script throughout the day. Maybe by the time I’m done I can stop by Silenus just to see Dolly and get my $100. There’s also writing a song with what I remember from the dream--but I have a full three weeks to perfect that.
No. 1070213 ID: 8f9bc4

Hah! I knew solpsism was a bankrupt philosophy!
No. 1070315 ID: 11f77a
File 169223146502.png - (169.59KB , 550x500 , 022.png )

Well then...

I guess there’s no prompt for me. It’s a slow morning after all. I may as well freshen up and analyze the script on the way to Brooks.

For the moment, I was immersed in the story. And for the first time, I’ve forgotten about Carter and our dreams together. The way Osman Neiro writes the scene is pretty careful. I don’t recognize the name or style either. I wonder if he wrote screenplays for anything else.

But who knows, maybe Silenus would just find it quite boring. As soon as I took pause into the real world there’s just no drive to do much.

I 've decided to take the bus this time. I don't want to be walking out with the chance of rain.

I’m slightly worried though. As soon as the script is out of my hands, what the fuck am I going to distract myself with now?

Anyway... where did I leave off? Enough about my own uninteresting life...
No. 1070316 ID: 11f77a
File 169223164363.png - (258.66KB , 550x500 , 023.png )

Let’s see...

He lifts his backpack and flips it over a shoulder. The other hand grabs a duffelbag.

It’s been several years since their time at the vacation home. Jason is at the end of high school. Len has finished a year of college.

They're back in their regular home, in the beginning of August.

Len: Hey Jase, can you grab that bag over there for me? It has stuff for the tent.
No. 1070320 ID: 1d7027

This could be the next boyhood!

Get that bag, but double check the stuff
No. 1070322 ID: 8f9bc4

poor Marlene xD

Do one more inventory, just to make sure! You brought a compass, right?
No. 1070331 ID: dd3fe0

So what are some of your cool, 'always be prepared for anything' stuff you bring with you when you have access to a decent sized bag?
No. 1070439 ID: 15a025

How about we pitch the tent, literally. Toss the bag and yell catch!
No. 1070503 ID: 11f77a
File 169266104169.png - (255.40KB , 550x500 , 024.png )

I grab the only other bag in the room; it’s the last one, looks like.

Jase: So is that everything? Compass? Toiletries?

Len: Yeah, yeah. I got it, I got it. Cam and I aren’t going to Bumfuck, Nowhere. It’s just a road trip to... anywhere. We got friends and AirBnB. We might stop at a park but, ya know.

Jase: Do you have your sleeping bag?

Len: Yeah. It should be in the trunk now. Cam is the one who probably has all the cool stuff--emergency stuff. He hikes a lot--we're taking his Jeep.

We pack it up. Len is taking an impromptu road trip with a friend from his high school years. He’s known him since, like, middle school probably.

Mom stands at the door. She’s taking pictures with her camera.

Len: Hey, I think that’s everything. Thanks man. See ya in a month, maybe.

Jase: Yeah--good luck man. Don’t get raped by any hillbillies.

Mom: You got everythiiiing?!

Len: yeah. We’re cool, mom!
No. 1070504 ID: 11f77a
File 169266106780.png - (240.88KB , 550x500 , 025.png )

I go back up to my room. I must’ve ran upstairs too fast because now my head hurts. I’ve been helping Len up, down, across and around the house. I’m about to sit into my desk.

Ah shit. Of all the—

Is that his goddamn wallet?
No. 1070505 ID: 11f77a
File 169266110344.png - (238.89KB , 550x500 , 026.png )

It is his goddamn wallet. What the fuck, maaaan.

I look out the window and the Jeep isn’t there. Fuuuuuck. How do you forget a stupid wallet?
No. 1070508 ID: 273c18

Call him.
No. 1070510 ID: 391f3d

Snoop in his wallet. Maybe we'll discover something shocking.
No. 1070512 ID: 6fec12

hmm, do you think the weather's changed? something seems different. still, call him about the wallet.
No. 1070514 ID: 8f9bc4

Well I don't know why you're asking me to answer that, but it's a pretty simple process.

step 1: leave the wallet on the desk
step 2: forget you did that
step 3: take the jeep and go
No. 1070515 ID: b58e07

Snoop then don't call! Unless you're looking to get someone ran over. This actually calls for you to follow after him in your own car/a taxi.
No. 1070609 ID: 11f77a
File 169281993040.png - (281.23KB , 550x500 , 027.png )

>Do you think the weather’s changed?
It looks the same, I think. Sunny. Some giant, white clouds overhead. Perfect weather to start a road trip.

>Snoop in his wallet. Maybe we’ll discover something shocking.
I make a quick search and open it up. There’s... nothing. Nothing but his driver’s license and some membership cards. Probably expired. Maybe a credit card. Not even cash. Did he get a new wallet? His license looks pretty current.

I make no delay to call him. I don’t think he was driving so he better pick up.


He’s not picking up. It’s just... it immediately went to an automated message.

Oh shit. Is he...? Is he abandoning us? Tell me he’s not starting a new life. I mean, more power to him, I guess. It may also be a lot to assume from a discarded wallet and possibly dead number.

Jase: MOM!!
No. 1070610 ID: 11f77a
File 169282000255.png - (275.31KB , 550x500 , 028.png )

I jog down the stairs. She’s sitting in the kitchen.

Jase: Mom!

Mom: Hrmm? Something up, honey?

Jase: It’s Len.

Mom: What?

Jase: Can you get a hold of him? Len forgot his stupid wallet. It has his driver’s license.

Mom: hu—who?

Jase: Leonard. He just left for his trip with Cam but forgot his wallet. He must’ve just left. I tried calling him but it went to voicemail. Can you try?

Mom: You... sure it’s Leonard’s?

Jase: Yes.

Mom: Are you feeling alright, son? I know it’s been hard since he left us.

Jase: Uh—what are you talking about? Look, that’s his license!

Mom: Hon, you know what... happened. I understand we... would like to forget these things. But there’s nothing you could’ve done.

Jase: What are you talking about?
No. 1070611 ID: 11f77a
File 169282007751.png - (196.37KB , 550x500 , 029.png )

Mom: You...

She shows great concern; I notice tired bags under her eyes as she’s confused yet--there was something else. Her voice is delicate.

Mom: Oh, son. Len... passed away, honey. You know that.

Mom: If you need to talk... you should always know I’m here for you.
No. 1070613 ID: 8f9bc4


Do you have some kind of a memory problem?? Wait you're kidding—that truck really *did* hit you! Lem was bullshitting you this whole time! Have you been forgetting everything since the accident? You need to write yourself a note about this! You probably already did. Why is your mom not shoving your notes to yourself in your face? How long has this been going on?!
No. 1070624 ID: 711d63

You're in disbelief, and youve entered the first step of grief: denial

Immediately leave, and get into you vehicle, and drive out to where your brother is going.
You gotta catch up to him. Run to the car if you have to.
No. 1070627 ID: ebdb47

Did Len -just- die? I thought the wallet contained an up-to-date license. Check it again just in case we're insane.
No. 1070653 ID: b58e07

Yeah, and ask your mom the date. Ask her how it happened. You're not dreaming right now are you?
No. 1070656 ID: dd3fe0

Tell her, "I need to go to the ER. I think I might have a brain injury."
No. 1070987 ID: 15a025

Look at the licenses again?
No. 1071009 ID: 11f77a
File 169316585885.png - (294.99KB , 550x500 , 030.png )

>Did Len –just- die?
>Do you have some kind of a memory problem??
I... wait.

I... I remember now. He did die. For a while now. I can recall that day. The news broke to me after school.

He overdosed or... something. He took some pills before class. He may have been drinking heavily. Partying the night before. Maybe it was anxiety. He was stressed the fuck out in college. I don’t recall every detail, it’s been a while. There may have been a test that morning so he took something to stay awake and alert. But he blacked out in the middle of class and fell out of his desk.

I was returning home after high school; I finished an evening of cross-country. Mom picked me up. Dad immediately drove over three states to see him.

There was a funeral. We had family over in my aunt’s backyard.

I kept his wallet. I don’t know why but I kept a lot of things from his room. Mostly decorations, mementos. Memories. His old portable TV he played Xbox on during our camper trips. Books. Stuff now in my closet.

That was seven months ago.

But I just saw him a minute ago.

I remember months of his presence, though. Not even dream-like, but as real as memories can be.

I’m looking at his license again--making sure it’s all true, making sure it’s current.

Jase: Mom...
No. 1071010 ID: 11f77a
File 169316588801.png - (222.44KB , 550x500 , 031.png )

>Have you been forgetting everything since the accident?
That was one of the things I’ve never told mom when I was younger; the time I was almost hit by that truck. Was it a truck? Car? Jeep? I know I dodged it. And I haven’t had moments where I’ve been forgetting things--especially as important as my brother’s death.

Jase: I think I need to visit the ER. I might have a brain injury.

Mom: Did you hit your head against something? Turn a bit. Let me check for a bump.

Jase: What day is it? Isn’t it August?

Mom: Saturday the 16th.

Jase: Yeah, sounds about right...

I don’t know how to explain what I’m going through. Maybe I did hit my head.
No. 1071017 ID: dd3fe0

Do you know the symptoms of a stroke or brain aneurysm? Because I don't. But I know major memory loss while awake and alert means I probably need to see a neurologist. And some brain stuff is seconds count.
No. 1071021 ID: e51896

That ear piercing is new between when you saw your brother leave on the road trip, to now. Maybe if you continue having these memories, you can try to feel your ear and see if the piercing is there or not. if it's not, you're living a memory. If it's there, you are in the present. use that as an anchor.

When did you get your ear pierced by the way?
No. 1071024 ID: 8f9bc4

Symptoms of a stroke? Of course you know those! Sagging face muscles, inability to speak or form words, eyes dilating improperly, an absolutely abominable headache. You probably read up on a bunch of brain disorders trying to find an explanation for... this. None of them really fit.

So you didn't get some sort of horrible head injury in a car accident you don't quite remember right. Were things slipping even then, between one truth and the other? Even when you were a couple of dumb kids?

One way or another, your brother's both alive and dead at the same time. His wallet's the only link you have between these states of being, or mind. Keep it safe. You don't want to lose this. Do you remember what drugs it was that he overdosed on? If you could find out what those pills were, or where he got them, they might be something... stranger than drugs.
No. 1071028 ID: b1805a


Didn't you guys talk about something, way back as kids that one day you hung out on the boat? About what would happen after you die?

Maybe this is it, except with Len gone, things are trying to "fill in the gaps." You're the leftovers of his world.
No. 1071032 ID: ad91cf

Wave it off as having been half awake and still dreaming. It could just be that and it's not like mom worrying helps anything. If it's not just dreaming... Well the only way to figure out is by it happening again.
No. 1071107 ID: c4e98f

This doesn't seem like grief, nor does it seem like the result of an accident. He was very quickly reminded, almost as if he was snapped out of a haze. Jase might be dissociating with what Len could have been doing if he were alive.
No. 1071309 ID: 11f77a
File 169343752254.png - (229.88KB , 550x500 , 032.png )

>When did you get your left ear pierced?
>That ear piercing is new between when you saw your brother leave, to now
Oh, right. The ear ring. Len and I got them a couple summers back; I think it was the same year when I got drunk. We were at a Claire’s store and I was convinced to get one with my brother. It was on impulse, more or less. Didn’t even hurt--I was surprised. Mom was fine with it, no biggie.

Or did I? I must’ve. I’m both certain and confused now that it’s brought to my attention.

>Do you remember what drugs? [...] they might be something... stranger
Hell if I know. I always played it safe--so I’m not well-versed in pot smoking, drug symptoms or their names. I guess it was something like Adderall to help stay awake for the test.

Jase: Can we still visit a hospital? I don’t know if this is going to be a stroke or aneurysm. I just have a bad feeling about this.

Jase: It just happened as I walked in my room. Maybe I ran up the stairs too fast. I know I get migraines once a year; but this is different.

Mom: Alright, hon. If you think so--I’ll quickly get my purse with my things. Meet me in the car.

She turns away. I don’t feel a headache, it’s a lot of information at once. But I have to be certain of this memory loss.

>Jase might have been dissociating with what Len could have been doing if he were alive.
>Were things slipping even then, between one truth and the other?
No! Or... I don’t think so. Nothing significant. Nothing to make me question my reality. But now I’m conflicted with what’s true.
No. 1071310 ID: 11f77a
File 169343755865.png - (187.22KB , 550x500 , 033.png )

I sit in the car. I have memories of him as if he were a phantom.

>Didn’t you guys talk about something, way back as kids that one day you hung out on the boat?
We were pretty tipsy; more than that, even. Shootin’ the shit and making up dumb questions. I can’t recall word-for-word what was said--but the idea that we’re all left behind is ridiculous!

Could it have been a dream? Have I missed him that much to imagine him beside me when I was alone? I feel groggy. I hope this doesn’t evolve into early schizophrenia.
No. 1071325 ID: fcfcb3


You mean early onset dementia?
No. 1071353 ID: 1ca80a

No, he's worried that he's going to start seeing and hearing things regularly. He's also worried about memory loss but that's an additional issue.

But the symptoms don't really line up either way. Unless these two illnesses are comorbid in some strange ways, I'm guessing it's something else.
No. 1071389 ID: 8f9bc4

What's out the window?
No. 1071390 ID: 149ec0

Thats actually a good point. Something does seem reflected on the window.
No. 1071491 ID: 15a025

Did your piercing disappear? Feel your ear for it and look out the window.
No. 1071534 ID: 11f77a
File 169377538619.png - (241.02KB , 550x500 , 034.png )

>You mean early onset dementia?
I don’t know, to be honest. I’m too young to have this shit happening to me. I worry about my future and descent into madness. And I’m only 17...

>What’s out the window? // Something does seem reflected [...]
>Did your piercing disappear? Feel your ear and look out the window.
Huh? I never had a... piercing...

???: --cause Cam wanted to reach a friend before it gets dark. I’m like, dude, it’s four states away. We’re three minutes from my house, let’s loop around.

No. 1071535 ID: 11f77a
File 169377547187.png - (289.04KB , 550x500 , 035.png )

Len: So anyway--yeah, thanks for finding that for me.

Jase: O-Oh, no problem.

I hand over his... tablet.

Jase: It was under the... uh... must’ve fallen between furniture.

Len: Yeah, really would’ve sucked without it. Anyway, can’t chat for long so I’ll see ya in a month or so.

Why does it feel like I'm seeing a ghost? I’m both neutral yet... joyful to see him again.
No. 1071537 ID: 07c1f4

Tell him you had a horrible dream that he died from a drug overdose, and to please give you a call if he ever feels overly stressed out so he doesn't have to do such things as much. You're his brother after all.
No. 1071540 ID: b04e3d

Man, I don't know what's up, but I feel like I'm becoming unanchored in time. Hey man, if I was like, precognitive, or did mental time travel, or had the gift of prophecy, or whatever, if I couldn't prove it... You wouldn't blow me off, would you? Even if I couldn't get you lotto numbers or Kentucky Derby results and shit, you wouldn't Cassandra me--You'd still pay attention, right? Keep what I say in mind? Like, even if fate is in stone or some shit, which I don't fucking know one way or another, you'd at least TRY to avoid a bad end?
No. 1071563 ID: 1ca80a

I'd suggest pinching yourself but you already know you'll feel it. You can read and tell time too, no question. It'd be easy if this was a dream, but...

Probe him for what he's doing. Something about if he's gonna have fun, and how you've been thinking about your own future.
No. 1071710 ID: 8f9bc4

His... tablet? What about his wallet?
No. 1071767 ID: 11f77a
File 169396785728.png - (234.96KB , 550x500 , 036.png )

>His... tablet? What about his wallet?
What about it? He has it... I would assume. Hold on...

I stop him before he walks too far.

Jase: Hey, uh, there’s no roundabout way to say this but--

Jase: Just try to avoid any bad ends, okay?

Len: Eh--what? Huh. Did mom tell you to say that?

He’s confused, shrugging my comment with a chuckle as it was pretty out of the blue. But what I experienced doesn’t add up. And if I am somewhat unanchored in time--maybe it’s more of a premonition of what’s to come, or what might have been. There’s no way to prove it today, but this is a mighty big hunch.

Jase: I know this trip is a good vacation from school and all.

Jase: If something feels wrong out there--or if you’re feeling uneasy about going through things... just give me a call or something, okay?

Len: Uh--heh heh--sure I guess.

Jase: I mean it.

I aint in the chuckling mood; he sees that clearly now.

Len: Alright alright. Don’t worry about me, bro’sive. I’ll see ya later--I'll be fine.

He jogs back to his car and I hear the door shut. They drive off and I’m left standing wondering what just happened. I recall his death from another life. I saw grief on the faces of my family during those months without him. And now everyone is fine... as if I was the only one who carries that pain--
No. 1071768 ID: 11f77a
File 169396792963.png - (173.30KB , 550x500 , 037.png )

Oh hey. Looks like my stop is here. Good thing I found a spot to pause the story. Brook’s Clove is just down a few blocks.

Sure enough I’ll say hello to Emmylou once inside. I wonder how she’s been doing.
No. 1071778 ID: dd3fe0

Yea! Hang out with your friends, catch up with them, that's super important!

Out of curiosity, is there anyone that you haven't told about your experiences that you should? So far, people haven't reacted negatively when you described your vision thingies in culturally relevant terms, but that's, uh, not really 'pushing' it. Or maybe there's someone you think you might get away with pushing that envelope with?
No. 1071828 ID: 8f9bc4

Emmy seemed really enthusiastic about your writing. Maybe tell her how Nick and Robin saw you daydreaming some scribbles for inspiration, and about lost their shit when they thought it was actually supposed to be song lyrics. Then ask her what she thinks of your actual song lyrics, that you wrote from the orange dream?

Definitely share with her that you might have found a winning script. She had to put up with those honking awful other scripts too, yesterday.
No. 1071979 ID: 11f77a
File 169420282988.png - (163.11KB , 550x500 , 038.png )

>Is there anyone that you haven’t told about your experiences that you should?
Maybe I ought to list those who may already know, first. I have told my friends only surface-level details, however. Half-truths even. But nothing so straight-forward about communicating via dreams. I remember bringing up Carter to Emmylou but I played it off as someone ‘I met in passing’.

I mentioned bad dreams to Nico. He probably laughed it off due to my... delivery of it.

I don’t think I talked about my dreams to the band, but there have been weird things they noticed--like dozing off or how I’ve been writing lyrics down.

It seems I haven’t said anything about it to my boyfriend, Sebastian. And realizing now--he’s most in the dark about this. Although, he knows about the sleepwalking but that’s happened all my life.

I may need to talk to someone about this eventually. The problem is being certain they won’t think I’m a lunatic.

Emm and I make our pleasantries and she’s able to step away from the counter for a few minutes. I’m drinking a coffee to start my morning; I can feel my bones warming up. I’ll figure out a way to bring up the scripts eventually.

Marlene: So I’m guessing no one’s been asking for me around here.

Emmylou: Why, you owe the mob some money?

Marlene: No. It’s the Carter guy. Remember?

Emmylou: Oh! Right, right. Nah. Nothing yesterday. I was out by 5, too.

Marlene: Say, how was your date with that... guy yesterday?
No. 1071980 ID: 11f77a
File 169420287073.png - (162.56KB , 550x500 , 039.png )

Emmylou: Oh, Frederick?

She brightens up, kind of the opposite reaction I was expecting given her normal streak of dates.

Emmylou: Yeah, our lunch was nice! Fogerty’s seems like a nice couples restaurant. You and Seb should try it out. It’s not fancy but it’s a swell luncheon spot.

Emmylou: I’m also really sorry about how he acted yesterday. I should’ve told you about his sense of humor. It can be a bit out-of-left-field but I guess it gives off a certain charm as well. Certainly not like other guys I’ve been with.

Marlene: You seem pretty chipper about him, sounds like.

Emmylou: You think? I agreed to another date tonight without giving it much thought--so something must be working.
No. 1071981 ID: 8f9bc4

Or she could be being mind controlled by the Martian robot zombies from dimension X!

Carter never did say you were going to meet together. It's a long drive, that he's not confident enough to make. It would have been nice if he had come anyway, but oh well. Nothing unexpected here.

Ask Emmy how Fred really did ask her out, a few weeks ago at the hardware store?
No. 1072052 ID: 15a025

Must be going well if you're already going out again. What's the plan this time, Dinner again, or maybe checking out that new movie playing tonight?
No. 1072099 ID: 4efd82

Well, if she was to give it much thought, does she have anything else to add?

And it is pretty hard to even drop hints about the dream stuff. But she's in a pretty useful position. If Carter ever does show up, and you tell her before then that you haven't actually communicated before, that'd be pretty good evidence. Not that she couldn't call you a liar, but...
No. 1072264 ID: 11f77a
File 169457035187.png - (139.95KB , 550x500 , 040.png )

>It would have been nice if [Carter] had come anyway
I’m sure one of these days we’ll finally meet in person. It’ll just take some time for him to trust me. He seemed a bit shy to give away his phone number, or email. At the same time I’m a little hesitant about it in the real world. We are still strangers, in a way, but somewhat acquainted through unnatural means.

I resume the conversation.

Marlene: Well that’s good, I guess. What’s the theme this time? Dinner and a movie?

Emmylou: Obviously dinner. We’re hanging out at the park first, actually. Gardens. City sights. Then find some place to eat.

Marlene: How’d you even meet this guy?

Emmylou: Right here.

Marlene: I mean like... how did he charm his way to get you to say yes?

Emmylou: I‘unno! Like, you get regulars here. You recognize them eventually and start to make their favorite blend before they order at the counter. He visits the hardware store close to here for his roofing job. I guess he knew me enough to strike up a conversation. Aaaaand... one thing to another, ya know?

Emmylou: He was mainly talking about his job. Usual stuff: accident stories, how hot it can be in the sweltering heat with black fur, and such. Maybe I was the only one willing to listen to him complain about all that--not like my annoying stories here could top it.

Emmylou: But we talked about our exes and I suppose that just led to sharing some horror stories we could connect with. Soon enough we’ve been opening up like pals until he popped the question.

Emmylou: I don’t wanna ramble on for too long. There’s still a lot we don’t know about each other. Maybe I ought to restrain my excitement to be going out with someone new.

Emmylou: Your backpack seems a bit lighter~ Did you end up with any finalists for the golden script?
No. 1072279 ID: d6d4cd

Something with promise. You're still going through it but it's been a lot more enthralling than you expected. Just like with Frederick and her, maybe it's something about commiserating with some of the experiences you've been going through since the protagonist is having a weird time of his own.
No. 1072289 ID: 1ca80a

Surprisingly yeah, it's fantastic. Would need a lot of work in both the filming and the editing room to make it shine visually but it's enthralling so far.
No. 1072301 ID: 8f9bc4

Your rambling's beautiful, Emmy. It's great that you could share that about yourself and you two; sounds really promising. It's just a relief to know the guy more than that awful first impression. It'd break your heart if he left Emmy with another horror story to tell.

Anyway speaking of horror stories here's a guy being time displaced by his haunted dead brother!
No. 1072344 ID: 11f77a
File 169466433678.png - (157.35KB , 550x500 , 041.png )

Marlene: Oh don’t you worry about rambling on about him, Emmy. Sounds promising, really! Least it’s a better first impression than what I’ve had.

Emmylou: His humor is something to attune to.

Marlene: Oh, it’s probably not even him. I just was caught on a strange day, I suppose.

Marlene: Anyway--I think I have something showing promise. I’m still reviewing it but it’s a lot more enthralling than expected! I guess I feel sympathetic to the protagonist, due to the weird experiences I’ve been having.

Emmylou: What’s it called?

Marlene: ‘Jason in the Kaleidoscope’. The logline says it’s about a boy experiencing parallel lives. Time displacement it seems. It could shine with some good editing and filming. Beautifully written by some Osman Neiro. I don’t recall a screenwriter like that.

Emmylou: How long does a script like that go anyway?

Marlene: Well, typically a page equals a minute. Standard Hollywood is 110 to 130 pages nowadays--

Marlene: Hold up a minute...

I start rifling through, counting pretty quickly. I start to notice some things--while a majority of the script is in typeletter, there are sketches of notes in pencil and pen. Sometimes words are scribbled out. Still comprehensible. Seems more and more like a rough draft than anything. But by the time I reach the end of the script it seems to cut off at...

Marlene: 73 pages?

Emmylou: Short film?

Marlene: Wait, no. It can’t be...

Some quick murmuring of the last few pages

Marlene: There isn’t even an ending! It just stops abruptly!
No. 1072345 ID: a7a180

Maybe you should contact the author and see if he has a more up to date draft. The story showed promise.
No. 1072350 ID: 1ca80a

Well it's not like you'd get paid for ghostwriting the ending... unless you can leverage that into a job, gotta find the writer.
No. 1072357 ID: e5709d

>No ending
I think this would make a great first season.

So what if there is no ending yet? What you can do is submit the draft for editing, and then search the forums for discussions about what viewers think the ending to the series is going to be.

By the time the producers realize they've tied their name to a one-trick pony, they'll all get showered in cash and it will be too late to take revenge without looking like spiteful maniacs.
No. 1072464 ID: 11f77a
File 169489598137.png - (146.22KB , 550x500 , 042.png )

I’m double-checking for a number.

Marlene: I have to see if I can contact this author! I need something more up-to-date! Maybe Silenus has the address this came in...

Emmylou: Can you submit an unfinished script?

Marlene: Well yeeeeah but unless you’re Tarantino or Scorsese everything else is straight into the trash or... or maybe someone can buy the rights or...

Emmylou: Can’t you just finish it, then?

Marlene: Well, I suppose if Silenus bought the script they’d have free reign over rewrites. But who knows if they’ll just, uh, add ‘unwanted flair’. Someone else will end up working on it, I’m sure.

Emmylou: You don’t sound thrilled to hand it off.

Marlene: Oh... uhm... maybe I just...

She’s right. I feel very strongly for this story. Given what the three black sheep have been working on--I’d hate for a story to be ripped apart to please all audiences possible. Ya know those types of executives. Then again it sounds like the Industry ought to take a few risks to get back on top.

Marlene: It just seems promising and I don’t want it to fall into the wrong hands.
No. 1072465 ID: 11f77a
File 169489603012.png - (151.70KB , 550x500 , 043.png )

Emmylou: Why don’t you write the rest, then? Perhaps make it into a television show. One hour pilot. You can get your friends to vouch, right?

Marlene: Right but... I don’t know if I’m ready to stick around Silenus again.

I take a deep sigh.

Marlene: I was offered a job to return to the studio the other day, let’s just say that conversation ended a bit awkwardly. That’s why I feel like I’m in such a pickle right now. I want to work there yet... I don’t.

Emmylou: Oooh.

Marlene: If I can get in touch with the author, maybe there’ll be a more complete story without the need of much editing!

It looks like the author’s name is all I’ve got. I suppose this draft was submitted on accident and the real one has all the necessary information. Would I really consider going back to work for Silenus just for this?
No. 1072480 ID: 8f9bc4

It's uh... it's natural to have feelings for Nico; he's confident and helpful, a wonderful man and dead sexy. You can't help feelings that women just have sometimes, but it's not safe to work for Silenus, until you talk with Seb about the feelings you're having for Nico. Not... love, but allure and fascination. An understanding that you two click, that you never... consciously agreed to.

See if you can find out who Osman Neiro is just by the name. It's probably a pseudonym, but he might have published other stuff under it.
No. 1072484 ID: 15a025

Seems pretty clear going back to Silenus is a bad idea. Let's try and get ahold of the script's author first.
No. 1072691 ID: 809e5e

Given the circumstances, but the need for some additional info, you could compromise with putting a call in to the studio -- you exchanged numbers with Dolly and you're doing her a solid as it is, so odds are she may be your best bet for contact deets!
No. 1072738 ID: 5d8541

Sounds smart. Anything to sidestep various creeps.
No. 1073134 ID: 11f77a
File 169560480868.png - (135.75KB , 550x500 , 044.png )

>It’s natural to have feelings for Nico
Uuugh, maybe I can ask Dolly if he’s in today. That way I can wait for a perfect moment to miss him.

Marlene: I’ll text Dolly about it, and I can just meet her outside the studio! There are other scripts good enough for that $100 for now. She can answer me with ways to contact the author.

Emmylou: Is withholding a script bad?

Marlene: Not really. But if I try to pass it off as my own--sure. Obviously.

Marlene: Scripts are thrown out all the time in droves. Maybe Osman made copies and submitted to Bacchus and all the other studios. Perhaps they’ll all reject it; perhaps Bacchus will snag it first.

I consult the laptop to figure out whether Osman Neiro is a pseudonym of some kind. Some names show up but sometimes it’s not even the right name--such as Nero Osmand. It’s just a... peculiar name. Nothing else has been published in particular. No books or movies show up (aside from facebook accounts of normal people, I guess?) none of them say ‘screenwriter’.

Marlene: Why is it hard to just find who you’re looking for on the internet?

Marlene: I suppose my best option is to get in touch with Dolly then.

Emmylou: Yeah! Get that script to the big screen! I’m glad to witness the beginning of an Oscar-winning film.

Marlene: Heh, if only.

There’s only a few minutes left on Emm’s watch before she’s back to her job. I suppose I have the choice whether to call Dolly and head to Silenus or go on my normal routine to visit the Mnemonic Gaps first.
No. 1073136 ID: b1805a


Could notify Dolly that one of the scripts looks to be missing a few pages and drop the name of it and the author. Maybe it's as simple as someone having accidentally left the rest of it in a filing cabinet or something.

Since we ARE still working on the matter, it'd at least give us another day or two if we want to go visit the band as well.
No. 1073214 ID: 5d8541

Call Dolly first. Don't want to miss out on the chance to miss out on the chance to see Nico. If he's there you can see the band anyway.
No. 1073291 ID: 8f9bc4

Of course! It's his real name written backwards: Orien Namso! Wait no that's stupid.

osmanneiro... anoisemorn... inonomares... orinsoname... ismoanreno...
No. 1073377 ID: 11f77a
File 169585043316.png - (134.44KB , 550x500 , 045.png )

I text Dolly:

Hey, it’s Marley. Found your 100, several are good candidates. One script is missing a few pages, tho. Do you have the author’s address or missing pages? It’s rly good. Jason in the Kaleidoscope by Osman Neiro.. No rush.

My friend scoots up from her chair.

Emmylou: Well I think my time is just about up anyway. If the story is still incomplete, you should, you know, take it over! Seize it by the horns! Maybe this is the script you’ve been waiting to fall into your lap all this time!

Emmylou: I know you’ve been anxious lately about your life. I don’t want to be dismissive with what you’re feeling, but if you could put on a tough boss façade long enough to stomach through working under Silenus then perhaps it’ll all be worth the trouble. How long does it take to finish just one half-done script? A week?

Marlene: Hrmmm, maybe...

Emmylou: You’re made of stronger stuff than me, Marley. You just take care. And if you don’t pursue it--that’s not a bad choice either.
No. 1073378 ID: 11f77a
File 169585046711.png - (182.00KB , 550x500 , 046.png )

Emmy goes her way. I spend another ten minutes to finish my coffee. During that whole time I think about what I’m going to do for the next month of my life.

Suppose I take my money and leave Kaleidoscope in the hands of Silenus. They may never get around to picking it up. They may reject it and that’ll be that. They may change it into something else entirely. In that case, I will only have a song or two to write next to my name, that is, if Mneumonic Gaps makes it in the venue. Something to ponder on for the rest of the day.

I’ve decided to go my usual route and see Maebe and the boys next--pending on Dolly’s response. I’ll take the bus again, that way I can analyze more of the story.

Now where was I?
No. 1073379 ID: 11f77a
File 169585053314.png - (330.29KB , 550x500 , 047.png )

I’m in junior high now.

This is a spot my friends and I discovered--although, heh, name one place more typical than behind the bleachers. Still, it’s a good spot before recess finishes. It’s just the two of us; guess the other guys are busy elsewhere.

Elsa is with me instead; she’s a fun friend. She melded into the group pretty fast several months ago, near the beginning of the year.

And I’ve started having feelings for her. Sitting back here right now, it clicked, like I made a decision that we could be something more. I feel it in my stomach; it feels lighter, full of butterflies as it were. I don’t usually go to school events, but the homecoming prom is creeping up in a few weeks. I don’t even know if she’ll find it creepy to ask her on a prom date like this.

Elsa: Can you believe Brady got suspended for carrying pot, and not even on school property? I don’t care about those things but damn if our school aint harsh on the littlest shit...
No. 1073380 ID: b2cb45

Get memories of that alternate future where your brother died of an overdose, and shudder over that statement
No. 1073383 ID: 4d7155

Unfortunately the mood is off. Can't just ignore her, so maybe switch it to how much it'd suck for the school to find out you've gotten drunk. Get her thinking about you first.

Assuming that's happened by this point...
No. 1073386 ID: b1805a


What, seriously? Dang. What are they going to do next, suspend someone for using their phone to text in their own home?
No. 1073392 ID: e5709d

"Suspension is dumb. He should do a report on the effects of pot before neuroplasticity hardens up -and how charges on pot are used for caste-based persecution."
"What? Studying means I make more money."
No. 1073393 ID: 8f9bc4


She's under the bleachers with you, alone, and the underside of your bleachers isn't fenced off like mine was. It'd make you look weird if you didn't ask her to the prom, at this point. She's probably already going with someone else with your luck, but it would be seriously messed up if you didn't even ask.

Ask if she knows how long Brady's going to be suspended, because the prom is coming up and it'd suck if he had to miss that. You don't usually go to school events, but you kind of wanted to if you could find someone to go with. That should lead nicely into asking her. If it doesn't, and she avoids the subject, then she probably doesn't want to go with you, or go to the prom at all. If she doesn't want to go at all though, then maybe you and her can go do your own thing, that day?
No. 1073521 ID: 11f77a
File 169600905542.png - (335.07KB , 550x500 , 048.png )

>Get memories of that alternate [timeline]
I still remember that... ‘moment’. Nothing like it has come up again. It’s been about half a year and I’ve only had migraines--nothing severe. Perhaps it was delusion or a dream. Or maybe I was mixing up a show I watched. It’s been so long ago.

Jase: Seriously? I mean... off school property too? I don’t care much about that shit either; my brother smokes all the fuckin’ time. But they may as well suspend us both for being drunks.

Elsa: Now hold on--you’re a drinker, Jase?

Jase: O-oh no! No. I...

There’s something about her...

Jase: A few years ago my brother and I tried some vodka. Just once though and I-I never drank again. I don’t care about that stuff either--I leave all that junk to my brother.

Elsa: Hmm. I tried a bit of beer. Not my thing.

Jase: Well, gee, Elsa, guess you’re due for suspension as well.

Elsa: I didn’t get drunk though!

Jase: Well good. It’s not as fun as you’d think.

Bring it up, Jase.

Jase: Well shame Brady’ll miss the prom. He’ll probably spend the night ripping a fat bong on his porch.

Elsa: I don’t think he’s the type to go to proms just to show off his moves.

Jase: Yeah, he is kind of a neckbeard...
No. 1073522 ID: 11f77a
File 169600909834.png - (323.24KB , 550x500 , 049.png )

I have to ask her. Just once.

Jase: Hey--you even going to this year’s prom?

I have to try...

Elsa: Eh, I dunno. I wasn’t sure about it.

Maybe there’s a chance.

Elsa: But I suppose I ought to. At least once. Maybe senior year to get it over with.

I want to go with you.

Jase: My brother went once without a date. Just with his pals. He actually wore plaid pajama pants and a tie made of duct tape that said ‘Where’s the grits?’ on it.

She snorts, but she has a smirk.

Elsa: What the fuck? Hehehe. What the fuck does that even mean?

Jase: Hahahaaaa I don’t fuckin’ know. He’s just stupid funny like that.

Her smile...

Elsa: Gonna follow the tradition and be the prom jester, then?

Jase: Naaah. No... no. I’d rather be with... someone. Events aren’t usually my style.

Ask. Rip the band-aid off.

Jase: You wouldn’t mind, would you?

Elsa: Hmm?

Be clearer... Don’t be afraid. Say her name.

Jase: Do you want to go to the prom with me, Elsa?

She’s silent. It looks like she’s really considering it, but her face is plain. Maybe it’s just her resting face. She reseats herself in a different position. I didn’t make her uncomfortable, did I? This probably ruins everything. She’d find a new group to stick with. I should’ve said ‘would you like’, not ‘do you want’--
No. 1073523 ID: 11f77a
File 169600923549.png - (340.27KB , 550x500 , 050.png )

Elsa: Yeah, sure! Why not?

Jase: O-Oh, really? That’s good! Uh--cool!

Elsa: And you can call me ‘Ells’. I really hate Elsa. Ever since that stupid movie came out I hated Elsa. I’m beginning to like ‘Ells’ as a nickname. It’s cooler.

I can’t believe it.

Jase: Consider it done.

She said yes.

Ells: It might be corny, but I can have fun with corny. Even if to experience it once in my life to get that chapter over with--no offense to you, Jase~

Ells: It’ll get my mom to finally calm down about finding a date.

Jase: Well... I guess I’ll have to find myself a suit! I’ll have to forget about the duct tape tie.

She... said yes!

Ells: But to make our date official, you gotta give me something~

Jase: Oh come on. Are you expecting a ring? Or a marching band? Like what happened at assembly?

Ells: Hmmm, whatever you have on ya. Right now.

Jase: Even trash in my pocket?

Ells: If that’s what you think will suffice~

Jase: Now you’re definitely screwing with me. Maybe I can find something shiny around here.

I know she’s joking yet--I want to follow through. There are all kinds of forgotten junk. Bottlecaps, cigarette butts, chewed up lollipop sticks, buttons... hmmm. Of course there’s money in my pocket and my backpack with school junk.

Ells: Then I give you til the end of recess~ You can only search the area under these bleachers though. How 'bout that?
No. 1073541 ID: 8f9bc4

Break out the metal detector!

Or you know, just go looking for something that dropped down from above out of someone's pocket or something. Fancy pen? Fidget spinner? Gold (colored) amusement park tokens? Pocketknife?

Wait is that Len's wallet lying over there?
No. 1073542 ID: 681cb5

Kiss her, you fool
No. 1073550 ID: 82c3b6

A big washer that fell off the bleachers. A little worrying but it works as a ring for like a few seconds before it gets annoying.
No. 1073551 ID: b1805a


No, for real. Get a thin one if you can, and loop it on some string to make a cool amulet-style necklace. It'll be meaningful because hey, you made it, right?
No. 1073665 ID: 15a025

A washer necklace sounds kinda cute. Go for that!
No. 1073721 ID: f2320a

Even better if our hair was long enough to tie into a ring so "she always have us with her"
No. 1073913 ID: 11f77a
File 169636824358.png - (307.80KB , 550x500 , 051.png )

>Kiss her, you fool
Would that already be too forward? Premature? Maybe I can wait until prom.

Sounds like it’s time to scrounge for some things. I think there’s plenty of time before the bell signals the end of recess. If I find a wallet, that would be interesting. There are a couple screws and washers as well. And what-ya know? There is a fidget spinner back here. But... that sounds kind of dumb to propose with (I’ll still keep it, though).

These washers aren’t big enough to wear around a finger, but I can possibly find some string in my backpack. I have one of those long chains usually found on those hot topic pants; I can use those to craft a necklace. My hair aint long enough anyway for a makeshift thread and... that may be too weird.
No. 1073914 ID: 11f77a
File 169636826865.png - (310.31KB , 550x500 , 052.png )

I return to Ells. She’s been idly watching and scrolling through her phone. But it’s clear to her I’ve found something.

Ells: So you’re back.

Jase: Yes I am! And... I got you this! So, I formally ask you:

Jase: Ells, will you go to the prom with me?

Ells: Oooh~

She takes the necklace and lets the washers hang over her palm to dangle like chimes.

Ells: The creative type, hmm? Why, yes. I’ll go with you, Jase. The exchange is sealed.

I take my spot next to her again. But now I seem to be completely out of words. At least the hard part is done. Maybe I don’t want to speak right now; I just want to listen to her.

Ells: Hmm. I think Clementine was considering it; she went last year. She just broke up with Clive--although she and Donovan have been hooking up. Thing is, Clive managed to find some nobody named Roxy. I wonder if you can invite someone from another school. ’Know anyone else who’s going?
No. 1073923 ID: b1805a


>invite someone from another school
I mean, would they even know?
No. 1073924 ID: e5709d

Work up a strategy in case you develop 'schizo-warping' again and suddenly you're dating a different girl or alone or brought a serial killer.
No. 1073925 ID: 8f9bc4

Someone has to have talked to you about the prom. That's why it's on your mind now. Well that and Ells is pretty.
No. 1073950 ID: 82c3b6

A few people in your class have talked about it. And obviously a few of your mutual friends are... but maybe she missed some of them bringing it up, might as well mention them too.
No. 1073964 ID: 11f77a
File 169646251232.png - (240.97KB , 550x500 , 053.png )

Jase: Would the staff even know? You probably need a school ID at the door. There are probably some skanks who try to invite dudes in their 20s.

>Someone has talked to you about the prom. That’s why it’s on your mind now.
Maybe. Then again people are starting to put up flyers and propose to their girlfriends in the middle of the fuckin’ hallways. So it’s been everywhere and constantly shoehorned in every morning announcement at school. Soooo yeah I guess it’s starting to annoy me.

Jase: I dunno. Events aren’t usually my style. Len went to one for shits and giggles, like a prom jester--I guess. Kinda funny what he wore tho--

She passes me the blunt.

Carol: Yeah, fuck those proms. Too gushy for us anyway. Brady’s hosting a party at his house instead. Lucky that you held his pot for him. The police were so up in his shit, their arms smelled real bad.

Jase: Heh heh heh... yeah.

Jase: I dunno what I was thinking. I just fuckin’ took it and chucked it in the letterbox.
No. 1073965 ID: 11f77a
File 169646253844.png - (370.11KB , 550x500 , 054.png )

>Work up a strategy in case you develop ‘schizo-warping’ again.
Well huh, what can one even do about that shit? Can’t really tap my heels together. Although I’ve never tried.

I hold in my breath and let the cannabis soak into my lungs. My blood feels as if it comes in waves through my veins. A rippling of goosebumps is under my skin. It was nice of her to take me aside and hang under the bleachers alone. I used to go here with a couple short-term friends. If I even cared about the prom I’d probably take my chances to ask her out.

Carol: Everyone in the know is invited. You’d be a guest of honor at his place. Everyone looooves the Emerson bros.

Jase: Really? I aint heard of anything like that.

Carol: Your brother has a reputation, you guys are pretty cool. People walk up to him and ask ‘are you an Emerson?’ like he’s some celebrity.
No. 1073967 ID: e5709d

Ask how she feels about a poly date.
No. 1073978 ID: 8f9bc4

Has, not had. Interesting. Do you remember that one time you went to the prom with a girl named Ells?

Heck how many proms are there? Are you fourth year or something? Carol is way too stacked to be a Freshman.
No. 1073987 ID: 82c3b6

Think he'll be at the party, then? Been awhile since you've seen him, kinda. And he's probably at the center of this, right? Like, sure, you're the one slipping through time, but ehether or not he's alive seems important to your... ability.
No. 1074113 ID: 11f77a
File 169661772226.png - (327.36KB , 550x500 , 055.png )

>Are you a fourth year or something? Carol is way too stacked to be a freshman.
She’s a senior, I’m a junior. The way she’s leaning back and pushing her chest out is something I aint gonna question. Maybe she’s trying to hint at something~ heh heh. I met her through Len when he invited me to one of his parties a while back. Since then, she’s been a good influence on me to take risks and not be such a shut-in.

>Remember that one time you went to the prom with a girl named Ells?
I never went to a dumb prom--and it’s yet to happen. We got, like, a week and a half before it comes. Who’s Ells? What kind of name is that? Wait, am I thinking of, uh, Elsa from Chemistry class? What the fuck...?

Why am I so happy all of a sudden? I guess I’ve always had a crush on Carol. Nothing official between us yet, but I love hanging out alone with her.

Yet I keep seeing that other girl in my head. Ells or Elsa. It’s strange. I’ve never hung out with her, yet I’m remembering her like she’s an old friend or... she is a friend. Everything I’ve said to her. How we met. My days hanging in a different group. I knew nothing about her a second ago. But she was just here speaking to me.

And my heart is fluttering--and I’m caught between feelings for Carol and Elsa.

Jase: The fuck am I smoking?

Carol: Ooooh I don’t fuckin’ know. Dustin calls it ‘ghost tears’ but he grew it himself... ‘supposedly’. It’s the same shit we’ve been smoking a few days ago.

Jase: hrkk—kakk! It’s giving me visions.

Carol: Come oooon. Hehehe.

Jase: It’s tainted. I know it. He slipped something in it.
No. 1074114 ID: 11f77a
File 169661783970.png - (294.23KB , 550x500 , 056.png )

>Think [Len’ll] be at the party, then? […] You’re the one slipping through time
Len is fine, he’ll be there for sure--and I dunno what you mean by slipping through time. It’s still... early May last I checked. I remember him ‘dead’ but I guess that was my imagination running wild. He returned from his trip and hosted a hangout while my parents were out of town.

That was when I first met Carol.

I got shit-faced and I only remember passing out on her lap. I remember how warm it felt, like a sunbeam across my face. It felt so good. Everyone and my brother were poking fun at me the next day but it’s all a blur. I didn’t care.

Maybe I should, ya know, ask Carol out. Officially, I mean. Or I could wait until the party at Brady’s. But what if some other dude gets to her first? Uuugh, I feel so good right now! I feel I should ask her out this very moment before it's lost!
No. 1074115 ID: 1e04e1

You're not necessarily slipping through time, though you might also be. Possibly alternate timelines or alternative quantum realities. Or just obtaining data from them. You are going to want to practice mental dexterity -- landing on your proverbial feet if you find details of the world you know not matching up to what you expect. And also, keep an eye out for useful data from one timeline or quantum reality that will be relevant to another, even if details don't match. So far, no reality has been that far off from each other; there is still geometry and physics and time and space and a planet and people and high school and a shared language and you know the people and they are acting in character and all that. If you can surf this crazy fucking wave, you can get by, maybe even make a positive difference!
No. 1074116 ID: 1e04e1


*the world you see in front of you not matching up to the world you know about, or what you expect to see
No. 1074128 ID: 8f9bc4

Tell her, "You know if we did go to the prom I'd totally ask you out." It's a joke because you're not and you think proms are dumb too, but just tell her you really admire her and it's nice to chill with her like this, if she asks wtf. Say you hope Brady's party is going to be really awesome.
No. 1074133 ID: b1805a


You might as well, dude. Someone else is gonna butt in if you don't, and besides, she seems to like you enough and you already know how good her lap is.

(Ohhhh ... multiple parallel realities. You're experiencing different potential lives, it seems, and remembering them at key points.)
No. 1074173 ID: e5709d

"This stuff is gooood... makes me, wanna, uh, ask you out. But, I'm like, going out with Elsa. I think. Maybe? I dunnnno..."
No. 1074292 ID: 15a025

Well, washer necklace worked the first time. Make her one too!
No. 1074297 ID: 82c3b6

Nah there's a bit of sweet corniness in that other world's Jase and Ells that isn't going to fly here.

Honestly swimming in weed and alternate realities is not a great headspace to ask someone out in. I'd avoid bringing up the feelings and more just, compliment her? Call her cool and fun and say you think you'd be good together.
No. 1074578 ID: 11f77a
File 169715010550.png - (342.45KB , 550x500 , 057.png )

>You’re experiencing different potential lives, it seems.
>Possible alternate timelines or quantum realities. Or just obtaining data from them.
I seem to remember everything leading up to those points. Shit, is it really happening again?! First my brother died--then he’s alive. And now I feel like I’m living double-lives with two separate girls. Doesn’t seem like anything tragic is happening this time around. Maybe I wasn’t thinking this up after all. But why is it happening? This can’t be a dream!

Carol: You good there, Jase?

Jase: Y-Yeah. I’m just tired. This pot is also making me sleepy.

Jase: Ya know... if we did go to the prom I’d totally ask you out.

I make sure I add a little chuckle, like I wasn’t very serious. I have no qualms to go (unless...). But she snorts and everything seems fine again.

Carol: Yeah. Oookay, charmer.

Jase: Yeah, I kid. But you really are cool to me. I wished I were a bit more easy-going when I was younger. You’ve helped me stretch my legs a bit and at least try to take a little more risks.

Carol: Awe, no problem, dude! You and your brother are really cool guys!

Jase: There is something I’ve been meaning to ask--uh--unrelated to the prom, though.

Carol: Oh?
No. 1074579 ID: 11f77a
File 169715013670.png - (351.08KB , 550x500 , 058.png )

Jase: Will you just leave me the fuck alone?! It’s not fuckin’ funny! Never fuckin’ was!
No. 1074580 ID: 11f77a
File 169715019676.png - (321.65KB , 550x500 , 059.png )

Clay: Awe, is the lil’ faggot gonna cry? He cwying that he misses his bwother sow muach?

Eddie: Hey, you know how sometimes dogs and cats go crawl under houses and shit to die alone? Is that why you’re here?

Go away...

Jase: Fuck you, man!

But I may as well be dead...

Eddie: Do those schizophrenic pills shrink your dick, you pansy?

Clay: I think he wants to say something.

Eddie: Yeah. Whatcha got to say?

Ells: Jason?

Jason: Yeah?
No. 1074581 ID: 11f77a
File 169715030234.png - (323.16KB , 550x500 , 060.png )

Ells: You said you wanted to say something?

Jase: Yeah. Hold on. I’m seeing things.

The school greenhouse.

Ells: Everything alright?

Jase: A headache. Migraines are kicking in.

I haven’t had the chance...

Jase: You were saying?

...to ask her...

Ells: Hehehe, you dunce. You were going to ask me something.

But I did ask her... she said yes. But she wasn’t there behind the bleachers that day. I feel like she’s holding out on an answer but she had already given me one.

Do I tell her I love her...?

Ells: Jase?

Jase: Those flowers look real nice, by-the-way.

Ells: Oh! Thanks. Purple pansies are my favorite.

Will she feel the same? Why do I already know her answer?
No. 1074582 ID: 8f9bc4

Quick ask Eddie out to the prom! Wait no!
No. 1074583 ID: 3a02c7

Don’t get your memories confused. There are three timelines so far. You have identifiers for each, people who are in them - or who are not. You could probably handle parsing out three answers separately like this, and to the right people.

The problem is… time? Are you jumping about in times of your life as well as between alternate timelines? Gah. Then different reactions to events might create fresh conflicting memories and perhaps making your confusion worse.

But… there should be a way to combat that, no? If you already experienced something - you could recall what to say and do. The feedback loop doesn’t have to be discordant, ugly - it could be affirming, synchronous. Follow the path your memories trod before, until a less confusing jump-off point emerges.
No. 1074584 ID: d06299

You need help. Something or someone to ground you, because it's speeding up now. Tell her what's happening.
No. 1074590 ID: dd3fe0


Now's not the time for this, I think. Establish a rapport with her first!
No. 1074622 ID: dd3fe0

Observe, Orient, Decide, Act.

In each place, take a short pause to get your bearings, and make a decision on how to act based on context, and commit! Now's the time to surf the wave!
No. 1074775 ID: 15a025

Don't eat the plants, don't eat the plants

This might be a fourth universe/timeline you're in now Jase. Seems like you haven't confessed your feelings to her in this one. Relax and just take a deep breath. Take a few of the purple pansies, and make her a little floral crown with them. Tell her how you feel.
No. 1074843 ID: f2320a

No. 1074886 ID: 11f77a
File 169751273664.png - (342.96KB , 550x500 , 061.png )

>Don’t get your memories confused.
>Observe, Orient, Decide, Act
Okay. I can try. Refocus. The school greenhouse. I remember walking through the greenhouse to see her. She’s so sweet watering the plants. She’s beside me. I’m... here.

My life... I never lost Len. I never met... Carol. Those bullies, they never bothered me. I never knew their names until now.

Thing is, when I... ‘jumped’... I had picked up what I remember in this timeline. Yet... I’ve always been in this timeline and I’m given knowledge of a past in a different timeline. If that makes sense.

I’m the original Jason right now. But so were the others..?

>Take a few of the purple pansies, and make her a little floral crown.
I feel at ease soon enough. I start picking the pansies. I’m not really good at weaving a small crown. Everything was fine until she gradually turns to see how I’m doing. She pipes up and quickly shoves my hand away.

Ells: H-Hey! WHAT are you DOING?!

Jase: O-Oh, shit! Fuck. Sorry! I-I-I wasn’t thinking! My mind was elsewhere and...

Ells: I know you weren’t thinking! Some of us just planted those! It’s probably someone’s homework!

Jase: I said I was sorry! Who assigns flowers for homework? I don’t know of any... agriculture... class!

She shoots me a glare and moves to the next stash of plants.

Ells: ...horticulture.
No. 1074887 ID: 11f77a
File 169751281545.png - (264.15KB , 550x500 , 062.png )

>You need […] something or someone to ground you […] Tell her what’s happening.
I try to jumble the right words together to make it sound like I’m not some kind of lunatic. Especially after that stupid move--it’s weird to break the silence after that.

Jase: Ells...

How do I even tell her now?

Jase: Has anything been strange the past few days?

Ells: Hmm? Hmmph. No. Nothing, why?

Jase: I’ve been... all over the place. So I may not remember if I talked to you about this before.

Ells: Well before we get to that... what did you just call me?

Jase: Uh. Ells? Elsa?

Right? She wanted me to call her Ells..?

Ells: Hmm.

Jase: Is that okay? I'm sorry.

Ells: Nah, I must’ve told you to call me that. I swear I made the decision to avoid ‘Elsa’ an hour ago in my head. Because of that stupid movie...
No. 1074888 ID: 11f77a
File 169751293006.png - (309.27KB , 550x500 , 063.png )

Jase: Ells, please. I have to make sure I asked you this.

Jase: Do you have plans for the prom coming up?

Ells: Me? No. Not really. Nothing solid. I was considering going to a movie night with a friend but I have to see if she’s still up for it. It’s up in the air. Proms make things feel complicated for no reason.

Jase: Well, if you're on the fence about it--why not go to the prom with me?

It’s a bit easier to ask the second time.

Jase: It’s something we’re probably wanting to get over with anyway! At least once!

She waters her plants, chipper now.

Ells: Hmm. Hmm~ I dunno...

Ells: I’ll think about it! There's still senior year at least!

She still smiles at me. I feel like there’s hope--but I wonder why her answer is different than the first time. I mean... the other first time. Was it something I’ve said? Does she not share the same feelings I have for her?
No. 1074892 ID: dd3fe0

Damn, every time you jump you get knowledge of all the other previous timelines? ... Does that include skills and learned techniques and stuff? Damn, superpower get much?

Huh, feels like 'you' might be simply an entity hopping between these people, only able to have cognition when inhabiting the body, where of course you think you are the original owner.

Well, nothing for it! Just try to leave things better than you found them, I guess. Hey, remember that old show, with that guy jumping between bodies of famous people in his lifetime? It's sort of like that, only not!
No. 1074893 ID: dd3fe0

Also the answer is probably different because you asked her at a different time, under different circumstances, and she lived a different life, and your interactions with her have been different. People aren't completely deterministic, yaknow.
No. 1074895 ID: 8f9bc4

It's not your fault you couldn't remember not to pick the flowers, but she doesn't know that. Her answer's different because she's still mad, but flattered. At least I would be.

Tell her you really are sorry. You can't just blurt out "sorry" and mean it. She needs to know you understand, and you are taking her seriously. Leave the question of the prom for another time. Tell her you really are sorry, this stuff is important to people, and you'll try to be more careful before ruining someone's horticulture.
No. 1075206 ID: 11f77a
File 169792045452.png - (301.38KB , 550x500 , 064.png )

I guess I flubbed up this time. I let Ells know I really am sorry, and she understands. I think we leave on good terms--she is still my friend.

>Every time you jump you get knowledge […] does that include skills and learned techniques?
Huh, not entirely sure on that. That would be an interesting superpower. Looks like all versions of me go to the same classes for now--so I can’t put that to the test. I do admit, sometimes muscle memory causes me to walk in the wrong direction for some classrooms.

The day drags on until the final bell is struck. I’m looking at so many faces I’m supposed to recognize, and who are supposed to be complete strangers. I can’t tell who my real friends are sometimes. I see Carol and feel my heart fluttering, but she walks past me like I’m not even there.

The only thing that bothers me more is the other Jason beneath the bleachers, having asked Ells on a date--where she confidently says ‘yes’. I know I still have a chance, but the closer prom gets, the more anxious I become. It’s in a matter of days by now.

Roxanne: Sorry, I’m just nervous reaching out to you like this.
No. 1075207 ID: 11f77a
File 169792048921.png - (356.87KB , 550x500 , 065.png )

Roxanne: I know we don’t really know each other--

Roxanne: I mean, we’re in the same computer class and trigonometry but that’s a bit beside the point! A-And the prom is in a matter of days.

Roxanna: Sorry. What I mean is--

Roxanne: If you haven’t asked someone out yet, maybe we can go to the prom together!

Roxanne: Sorry!
No. 1075208 ID: dd3fe0

Time is growing short to make plans. Answer yes. Give her a 'full disclosure, since you specified, I did ask someone else, she said maybe, and hasn't gotten back to me, but it's getting close and these things can't be put off.' sort of thing. Ask her what brought this on, why you in particular?

Is she a fellow traveler, maybe? There might be some leading questions you could ask, stuff about fate, feelings of a past life, just getting a feeling, things feeling weird. You know, stuff that's deniable and potentially standard teenage interest in mysticism and esoterica.
No. 1075229 ID: 8f9bc4

ALL the go to the prom withs!

Ask her if she wants to go to the prom, because it's fine if she wants to do something else, but yeah you'd like to get to know her better. You didn't know she was interested. You're Jase! What's her name?
No. 1075232 ID: b1805a


Given the likelihood of jumping again, couldn't we try this out?

Give it a shot, see what happens, worst case scenario, it never did.
No. 1075238 ID: 15a025

No. 1075265 ID: 3ea497

Hmm, a bird in hand is worth two in the bush, and you don't to hurt her feelings...

But on the other hand, going with a girl you don't really know just because the first is becoming hard to get might not make you happy.

Accept only if you have given up on Elsa.
No. 1075266 ID: dd3fe0


Uh, that's rational only assuming people have reasonable communication skills. This is HIGH SCHOOL. Just say yes! Ya snooze ya lose!
No. 1075305 ID: f2320a

So we got a date in blue, green and now yellow
No. 1075626 ID: 11f77a
File 169828981133.png - (328.16KB , 550x500 , 066.png )

Before my response, I catch a glimpse of Elsa at her locker! I was kind of hoping to ask her out first. Call me a creep, but I guess you could say I’ve been smitten with her--watching from afar. She barely knows me--and I didn’t mean to wait for so long before asking her out. How time flies and now I’m put on the spot.

I guess I was just as nervous as this girl was to approach me.

>What’s her name?
>Ask her what brought this on, why you in particular.
I think her name is Roxanne; I barely talk to her as-is. I can’t seem to recall much more about her. She’s only notable of her height and how quiet she is in class or lunch. This is probably the first time she’s spoken to me aside from a few in-class partner assignments peppered throughout the school year.

Jase: Oh, hey! You’re... uh...

Roxanne: Roxanne? I’m in your computer class-

Jase: Right, you’ve said that. I remember now.

Roxanne: Oh, yeah. Sorry.

Jase: It’s okay. Uhm, not that I mean to sound rude--I'm just curious! Why me?

Roxanne: Oh, I don’t know. You seem nice, I guess. I just see you alone sometimes. I figure you haven’t asked anyone out yet and everyone seems to want to go to the prom so...

Roxanne: Maybe I was too forward. Sorry.

Jase: No. No, it’s okay. I maaay have asked someone else and it’s a maaaaybeee.

Jase: But she hasn’t gotten back to me! So, uh--
No. 1075627 ID: 11f77a
File 169828989938.png - (221.78KB , 550x500 , 067.png )

>ALL the go to the prom withs!
>Given the likelihood of jumping again, couldn’t we try this out?
>Going with a girl you don’t really know just because the first is becoming hard to get might not make you happy.
I feel... uncertain. I do want to go, and it’s better to go with someone regardless who it is--than alone.

I’m on the fence here. Maybe if I go with Roxanne I can always just see Elsa there, too? Or would that be wrong? I don’t really know Roxanne, but I feel I’ve known Elsa several times over. I forget; she had said yes before, right?

Maybe I can make up for what happened at the greenhouse. I know my gut also says yes to Roxanne, but juuust in case..?

>just say yes! Ya snooze ya lose!
Jase: Ehm--

Jase: Ya know what? Sure. Yeah! Yeah, I’ll go out with ya. Thanks for the invite and all.

Roxanne: O-oh! That’s good to hear then. H-Here’s my number! We can talk a bit and, you know, meet at either of our houses.

Jase: Right! I’ll text you now and you can save it to your contacts. I guess I’ll chat with ya in a bit after I tell my mom.

Jase: Pretty uh... pretty exciting! Yeah! Seeeeeee ya around..!
No. 1075629 ID: 11f77a
File 169829007279.png - (301.42KB , 550x500 , 068.png )

The days pass normally. I’ve had time to ponder about my other lives; nothing has shifted me around since. So why is this happening to me again? Or faster or... more 'me's' to experience? No one else has experienced the jump. I know I won’t get a straight answer--but what if it gets worse? Could I think real hard for a favored outcome, that I’d end up there?

What if I died right now? Do I jump or is it over?

Mom: Alright, just one last smile, you two!

I hate being told to smile for the camera; I don’t like lying to myself. I sense Roxanne feels that way too. Still, it’s prom night. I’m sure my parents will frame this moment.

Mom: Wish your brother stuck around but once again he’s off partying.

Jase: Eh, whatever. He probably doesn’t want to be reminded of his time at the prom.

Roxanne: Thank you, Mrs. Emerson.

I haven’t really asked Roxanne about herself. Schoolwork has been in the way and we’ve only talked about what to wear.
No. 1075631 ID: 8f9bc4

A beautiful moment to frame, regardless of what happens to whom when. You know more than you'd think about Roxanne I'd say. You have met her parents, haven't you? How do they act around her? What kind of house does she live in? What are her other classes, besides computers? Did she pick an elective?
No. 1075727 ID: 050e07

May be an apt time to have a scenic stroll and more personal chat -- find out interests that you share ( could be extra helpful if things surface in conversation that remind you you like them! ) and it's possible that if you can manage to learn a lot, this can be more of an anchor point to look back on when trying to ground yourself.
No. 1075757 ID: d06299

You could start by sympathizing with having to smile for the camera, try saying you don't know her but that's at least one thing in common.
No. 1075760 ID: f2320a

It helps thst she is beutiful but a bit too skinny hmm is this this realities yous opinion or is it you who think that
No. 1075794 ID: 11f77a
File 169853448692.png - (282.07KB , 550x500 , 069.png )

>You have met her parents, haven’t you?
Mom drove me to pick Roxanne up--and she’ll drop us off at the school. I did see her parents and they look normal enough: fun, loving; even if she is always acting nervous. It’s a suburban neighborhood, so all the houses are the same. We had to take more photos for her parents before continuing on our way. They seem excited she has a date--the kind of surprise where you’ve always thought your daughter would be forever single.

>What are her other classes besides computers?
We’re in the car and Mom’s the one firing questions. I haven’t told much about my date so she’s taking every opportunity to know who this mysterious girl is. Then again, I barely know her either.

Mom: So Roxanne! How do you know Jason? He’s barely told me about you! Do you go to the same class together?

Roxanne: I know him from math and... computer science. I just thought I’d try to ask. I guess I could tell he wasn’t planning on asking anyone out. I was pretty nervous. My parents were wondering if I'd go.

Jase: Yeah, the days were drawing close, huh.

Mom: When Jason came home and told me about you I was like ‘What? Who is this person? Jason never had a girlfriend before’!

Roxanne: Oh! Well. Maybe.

Jase: We’ve only really talked for a few days, mom. I wouldn’t jump ahead like that just yet.

Mom: You’re a very reserved boy, Jason. I think you two are a good match; he hardly tells me anything! I’m glad you two could find each other!

Jase: Well that’s surely... something, aint it?

Mom: Have you thought of an elective, Roxanne? You know junior year is where it counts. Everyone applies to college their junior year. Senior? That’s just waiting for college to happen.

Roxanne: Uhm, I don’t know. Maybe interior design or something. I like decorating; maybe that’ll be a good start.

Mom: Jason, did you say you want to make video games? Maybe you can develop a game on home decorating.

Jase: Yeah, sure. I guess...
No. 1075795 ID: 11f77a
File 169853451519.png - (250.16KB , 550x500 , 070.png )

At last we reach the prom. I can’t believe I’ve made it without cringing into a ball first.

>if you can manage to learn a lot, this can be more of an anchor point.
That could be a good strategy then. We’re not really dancing quite yet--I think everyone’s being a wallflower, drinking punch, and eating bite-sized brownies. I haven’t seen anyone I recognize yet; students are still arriving. I wonder if I’ll see Elsa... or, ya know, any of my other friends. Still, I feel awkward with how quiet it’s been between us since entering.

Jase: So... recognize anybody yet?

Roxanne: Sort of. I don’t really know a lot of people; I moved in the middle of my sophomore year.

Jase: Oh really? I didn’t know that. Uh, where from?

Roxanne: Clarence. Should be a few counties over. We lived in an apartment and, well, we just needed more room among other things. Have you lived here all your life?

Jase: Yeah. However, I’ve lived at my dad’s marina during the summer to work.

Roxanne: Oh. You must like fishing too, then?

Jase: Nah, I hate it. Well no. It’s fine. I’m not eager to wade in a boat smelling like the dirt on the worms.

I think I catch a glimpse of Clay and Eddie with their date. Despite me not knowing them I sense a strong hatred...

Maeve: Hey, you good?
No. 1075796 ID: 11f77a
File 169853455848.png - (346.17KB , 550x500 , 071.png )

Jase: Yeah.

Jase: Tired. Just tired of everything.

Maeve: It’s okay, baby. We’re all tired. We’re all in the shit together. The world sucks. But we’ll pull through.

Maeve: Where’d you find this place? It’s a perfect spot to get lost.

Jase: I dunno. I ran away here once.

Jase: It reminds me of... the greenhouse at school. It just feels familiar here. It’s hard to explain.

Maeve: You won’t have to, hon. It’s wonderful. It’s a very nice garden~
No. 1075826 ID: 15a025

You doing okay Jase? Whats the last thing you can remember?
No. 1075833 ID: dd3fe0

Oof, something happened. Sigh and collect yourself and stretch a little to create a pause in the conversation to orient yourself. What are your current circumstances? Are you still in the same timeline with a small timeskip or did you swap timelines?
No. 1075869 ID: 8f9bc4

He's not okay he's crazy.
But at least he's always loved.
Except Eddie, but that's just because he didn't ask Eddie out to the prom.
No. 1076218 ID: 11f77a
File 169894276337.png - (266.07KB , 550x500 , 072.png )

>What’s the last thing you can remember?
>Sigh and collect yourself and stretch a little [...] orient yourself.
I lost my brother, but I don’t remember Clay or Eddie bullying me. I haven’t made any new friends. I eat alone at the lunch table. My grades are failing because I just don’t care anymore--I skipped school several times; one more and I may be suspended for good.

I slowly get up and walk around.

I don’t know what to do with my life. It’s been a big nothing so far. Never took chances. Never had guts. Only played it safe. Only made worse that I’ve been hit hard with a realization that things could’ve been better.

I have Maeve with me; she’s not from my school. I think she’d be in college if only she had the chance. I ran into her at a concert in the basement of a record store. Her life isn’t so great either--although significantly worse with an abusive past both familial and ex-relationships. I’ve been getting to know her and she’s been inviting me to hang around the town, more garage bands. So I guess there’s that.

But we’re just talking about how life sucks most of the time.
No. 1076219 ID: 11f77a
File 169894279039.png - (272.87KB , 550x500 , 073.png )

No. 1076220 ID: 11f77a
File 169894281971.png - (269.65KB , 550x500 , 074.png )

Jase: I could’ve gone to a prom...

Jase: But I didn’t.

Jase: I would’ve been happy.

Maeve: Awe, baby.

Jase: I see them. I see them all.
No. 1076221 ID: 11f77a
File 169894285032.png - (295.10KB , 550x500 , 075.png )

I see everything that could’ve gone right for me.

Ells: Jason! There you are!

Ells: It’s real easy to get lost in here! Come on, there’s a spot with some wiggle room.

She holds my hand. I can feel it... distantly--that I could grab it from another time. I think about how warm her palm is, and it becomes real.

I love you, Elsa. And I’ve wanted to tell you for a long time.

I have to tell you. Over and over in my head.

Yet, for a moment I was home...
No. 1076222 ID: 11f77a
File 169894288235.png - (261.71KB , 550x500 , 076.png )

I am home.

I’ve never felt so alone.

It’s a different feeling in your gut. It’s not like starvation; it’s like a slow implosion. Or a little black hole. Your gut is turning on a spool.

But somewhere, this is the life I’m stuck with now.

All the others will go on without me.


A life worth living.
No. 1076223 ID: 11f77a
File 169894291267.png - (317.18KB , 550x500 , 077.png )

So conflicting.

Trying to make sense of this.

I keep getting distracted; bombarded by all these feelings at once of love and despair.

Observe... Orient...

No. 1076224 ID: 11f77a
File 169894294187.png - (241.02KB , 550x500 , 078.png )

Jase: Ells?

Jase: I have to tell you something before it’s too late!

Roxanne: Who’s Ells? Jason? Do you see someone you know?

Jase: Oh... maybe. I-I have to double-check. Could you wait right here? It’ll be only for a moment!

Roxanne: Oh, o-okay. Yeah.

Without thinking I walk into a sea of students.
No. 1076225 ID: 11f77a
File 169894300307.png - (283.03KB , 550x500 , 079.png )

The crowd is shifting; they are just silhouettes. No longer can I identify each shadow--now it’s a blot of darkness with speckled lights. The music is blurred; I can’t differentiate the songs as they overlap.

I can’t... pinpoint anything.

Jase: Elsaaaa?

Ells: Over here! Come on, this is my favorite song!

Jase: Wait for me!! I have to share something with you!

Ells: Whaaaat? You’ll have to speak uuup!
No. 1076226 ID: ed3442

Yeah, not falling for that one.

Get close and whisper into her ear.
No. 1076228 ID: eb0a9c

The psychosis is building up.
Your hive mind is coalesceing into some kind of lesser god. Don't fall for it. You are losing yourself, becoming something that can breeze through all lives by raping everything around you.

It's okay to take a break. Find a pen. Write what you have - and have not - been. Keep writing until you can find an organizational rhythm.

There's a pattern in this madness. An equation or seven. And it will lead to wealth in all iterations.
No. 1076229 ID: b1805a


Ah. Convergence time.

Either you go for it and actually ACT on your wishes to break the cycle, or you end up in the sad lonely space with Mauve and a funky piercing in your ear forever.

So stop waiting and just Do The Thing.
No. 1076230 ID: 45a276

Your awareness is blurring between the timelines, ride the high and just do something!
No. 1076318 ID: 8f9bc4

No. 1076472 ID: 15a025

Break the chain of life that is holding you back and reach for the stars Jase. Make that wish now or forever been silent.
No. 1076491 ID: f2320a

Grab onto Roxanne or lose yourself
No. 1076617 ID: 11f77a
File 169929226271.png - (271.43KB , 550x500 , 080.png )

>[...] go for it and actually ACT on your wishes to break the cycle
>your awareness is blurring between the timelines, ride the high and just do something!
I’m scared; I’m scared for this life. I desperately push through the crowd, shoving away students to finally reach her. My heart is racing and I grab Elsa’s midriff to lift her and spin. She gasps, but her smile is genuine. The world around us is a flash of colors like I’m in a kaleidoscope.

Ells: Hee! Jason! What’s gone into you~?

Ells: You’re just so... happy all of a sudden!

Ells: I like it, though. Don’t worry!

Our eyes lock. And it’s my chance to let my heart spill out my mouth--
No. 1076618 ID: 11f77a
File 169929230080.png - (303.91KB , 550x500 , 081.png )

Jase: Elsa!

I love you

Jase: I...!

Now or never...

Jase: I love you!
No. 1076619 ID: 11f77a
File 169929231664.png - (257.55KB , 550x500 , 082.png )

. . .
No. 1076621 ID: 7e6fd4

It looks like you made it to the other side. It's not as bright as you expected, is it? Maybe you're still in this tunnel.
No. 1076625 ID: 625f03

Don't panic. This might be the next day.
Check the time and call Elsa. Maybe go outside to meet her. The cold never bothered you anyway.
No. 1076663 ID: 8f9bc4

What's up?

You look rough.
No. 1076668 ID: eb0a9c

Aaand you @#$%ed up. Reactions from one world are pouring into another, making you look like a schizophrenic maniac.

...Sooo? How do you feel?
No. 1076672 ID: dd3fe0

Maybe you didn't mess up? What's going on?
No. 1076709 ID: 6f0455

Maybe you're free? Even if you've lost everything else, if you're stable, you still have your own future.
No. 1076865 ID: 11f77a
File 169956487532.png - (201.54KB , 550x500 , 083.png )

>Check the time and call Elsa.
>Looks like you made it to the other side.
>Maybe you didn’t mess up? What’s going on?
I look up my phone. It’s the night of the prom still. About 9pm. I scroll through my contacts and my thumb flicks names. It’s a surprisingly small list. More than half my friends are missing. The history of texts is gone.

Elsa is absent; I could try remembering her number instead! My hands shake. The room is cold. There’s a light snowfall outside.

Please pick up...



Elsa: Hello?

Jase: Ells? Elsa?

Elsa: Uh, yeah? Who is this?

Jase: It’s Jason! Did I forget to hand you my number? I just want to know what’s up.

Elsa: Jason? Who’s Jason? How did you get this number?
No. 1076870 ID: 8f9bc4

"Listen, something weird is going on. You gave me your number, and you told me to call you Ells, because we're best friends and you were really annoyed by that one snow queen movie. And now we never met? I don't know if my brother's alive or dead anymore."
No. 1076876 ID: c7e7a6


Add 'I think I'm in something like a time loop', and then start giving lots of information she knows that you shouldn't know to this. Drastic circumstances and all that, for when the wholesome Groundhog Day trick didn't work.
No. 1076883 ID: dd3fe0


Maybe start with the info rather than the explanation, though? and say it quickly, ending with the 'I'm not stalking you, help I think I may be stuck in something like a time loop!'

You've not tried immediate brutal honesty yet, after all.
No. 1077045 ID: 11f77a
File 169973947540.png - (177.31KB , 550x500 , 084.png )

Jase: Look I...

I can’t believe I’m about to say this. There is no way to segue into this crazy theory.

Jase: I know you from another time. I’m Jason Emerson and we’re best friends. Your name is Elsa and you hate the snow queen movie so you want to be called Ells, you like horticulture and purple pansies are your favorite, you think pistachios are gross because you ate too much one time and threw up, you had a Chihuahua named Sonny who gave you the scar on your pinky when you were four, and your Aunt passed away last Christmas.

Ells: Uhh.

Jase: I’m not a creep or stalker or anything! I think I’m stuck in some sort of... time loop and I need your help.

Jase: You’re the only person I can trust right now. You probably don’t know me at all but I beg of you to just hold on the line a bit!

Elsa: Okay... did Eddie put you up to this?

Elsa: ‘Cause you can tell him he can forget about our hangouts if he’s gonna share my number around like this.
No. 1077052 ID: 7e6fd4

hm... Strong start, but tell her to forget that best friends bit. And woah, she hung out with Eddie? That guy's a dick. Try telling her that you need help. Maybe throw in an offer she can't refuse.
No. 1077071 ID: 8f9bc4


"Wait, please! Can you ask Eddie to go out to the prom with me? There's still time!"
No. 1077073 ID: dd3fe0

No, Eddie didn't put me up to this. He's a jerk, you know that right? And he doesn't know ALL that stuff about you, does he? Really?
No. 1077075 ID: 15a025

Tell her Eddie is about the last person you want to hang around, he's a jerk.
No. 1077101 ID: f2320a

Support he is a nerk enough to not learn any of this
No. 1077134 ID: b1805a


Who's Eddit ...?
No. 1077159 ID: 15a025

Regardless, ask if she'd be at least willing to meet up at the prom tonight. You don't have to go as a date or anything. You'd just like a better chance to explain things than being awkward over the phone.
No. 1077404 ID: 11f77a
File 170011448559.png - (190.82KB , 550x500 , 085.png )

Jase: Eddie? No! No! He didn’t put me up to this. Eddie’s a jerk!

Jase: He doesn’t know all that stuff about you, does he?

Elsa: I don’t know! I say shit I don’t even remember from this morning.

>Maybe throw in an offer she can’t refuse.
What do I even have to offer with her?

Jase: Well Eddie’s the last person you’d want to hang around with. That guy’s a dick.

Jase: That aside though, I just need an anchor. I’ve been living so many lives that I feel aimless. But they all involve you one way or another.

Elsa: You need help, dude. Go see a doctor.

Jase: No no. It’s not that! It’s just... something happens and now I’m your boyfriend. A-A-And then I’m suddenly asking you out for the first time to the prom. And jump and jump to some parallel universe where my brother is dead or-or-or I’m with someone else. Or I’ve never met you--

Elsa: I thought you said you were in a ‘time loop’.

Jase: I didn’t mean time loop time loop. I mean--I don’t know what I mean! But something’s happening. I just need to see you, is all.

Jase: The prom!! There’s still time. I can see you at the prom happening tonight!

Elsa: I don’t know you, dude! Why would I risk seeing you?

???: Who’re you talking to, babe? Someone bothering you?

Elsa: Look, I’m hanging up. It’s late and I’m very busy tomorrow. Don’t... don’t call this number again, please.

Jase: No wait wait wait!


Jase: Elsa!!

Jase: Elsaaaaa!!!

Jase: God. Fucking! DAMMIT!!
No. 1077405 ID: 11f77a
File 170011454959.png - (256.95KB , 550x500 , 086.png )


I’m still stuck in this...


I’ve done everything, dammit! I confessed my love at the prom! What must I do?!

Somewhere, Jason gets his wish. I feel that. I feel heaviness in my chest. I hope he gets to be happy. Meanwhile he sees the rest of us dying!!

I realize... in this life, I’m no longer living in the same town!

Here, I live with my dad in another state after the divorce. Elsa’s miles away. What was I thinking?

There’s no one here I know. Memories of parallel friends linger.
No. 1077406 ID: 11f77a
File 170011457442.png - (177.83KB , 550x500 , 087.png )

I don’t even know if this life is the original one.

In this life, I have no direction and everything’s at a standstill.

I’ve done nothing to exceed or fall behind.

When I imagine a life of a different choice, I find it hard to conclude whether it’s currently happening elsewhere or it’s all in my head.

Could I make-believe a time where I get my way? And when I open my eyes, I would be there?


I’m so tired.

So, so tired...

Am I falling? Or is this weightlessness I feel?
No. 1077408 ID: 11f77a
File 170011463568.png - (244.42KB , 550x500 , 088.png )

Maeve: It’s alright~

Maeve: You’ll feel a lot better soon. I promise.

Maeve: I’ll keep my eye on you, hon.

Maeve: You’ll be okay, baby.

Maeve: You’ll be okay.
No. 1077409 ID: 11f77a
File 170011466586.png - (161.94KB , 550x500 , 089.png )

Maebe: Huh, well whatever it is--you seem to really be into it.

We step into her basement. I still have a little left of the story to read and stuff it in my backpack.

Marlene: It’s a breath of fresh air. I don’t think I’ve read a story like it in a long, long time.

Maebe: How’s it end?

Marlene: That’s the thing: it’s not finished.

Maebe: You can hand in an unfinished script?

Maebe: What are you gonna do with it? Write in the rest? Is that allowed?
No. 1077410 ID: 8f9bc4

I'm starting to be genuinely worried for Osman Neiro. If what he's writing is true to life, that would explain why the script is unfinished. It would not explain how the script got successfully submitted by someone living a hell of imagined fragmented disjointed memories?

Anyway, yes it's allowed, but a lot of work, and you don't want to contract with the studio again, for uh... personal reasons. That makes it complicated. Risk working with the studio? Risk letting someone else finish it? Risk them throwing it out since it's unfinished? Risk trying to find Osman Neiro and let the script languish unused possibly forever while you play detective to find someone you don't even know?
No. 1077427 ID: f14228

>Is that allowed?
Definitely not, at least not ethically. But if you could get in contact with the author you'd tell them to try to find an ending, even offer to help with it, though getting co-authorship on a real decent script like this would feel like cheating, if it gets picked up by a studio and used somewhat intact.

The core ideas are pretty solid. You could probably do a different twist on it, take inspiration, that sort of stuff, but that'd require more labor and time, and yes, is kinda cribbing, but all good writers do.

There's also inspiration for lyrics. That'd be well within rights, especially given how no-specific and vibes-based one can make them. A popular song could even be marketing for any eventual movie - or vice verse. But it's not like you're anywhere close to that yet.

Anyway, down to brass tacks. How's the music-making going?
No. 1077432 ID: 780417

Hey, Maebe did anyone tell you all that stuff on your nose makes you look like an elephant?

Anyway, allowed? Probably. They were planning on throwing these scripts to the trash anyway, and the film company wouln't care who wrote it as long as it's good enough for a movie.
Buuut, it'd probably be better if to keep consistent with the author's original vision.
And we are also unemployed so...why not? Let's go look for the guy who wrote this!
No. 1077433 ID: e51896

We can probably give the author direction and advice on where to take the story to its ending, but not co-write it.

for instance, that car that almost hit Jason I think was the true start of when he started time hopping. maybe Len was right about there being no car at that moment in time, but was actually a different moment in time in Jason's life where he got hit, or almost got hit. Maybe the author can re-explore that vehicle incident in some way to help Jason find closure to what he's going through.

tell Maeve, err, I mean Maebe your plans. Sorry, their names are pretty similar
No. 1077434 ID: 8f9bc4


Maebe-be there's a connection!
No. 1077437 ID: b1805a


Well, right now, I think we were trying to find the guy who wrote it, see if there's more left.

But ... maybe? Maybe we're supposed to, in some weird, cosmic irony about trying to find out inspiration to write something?
No. 1077444 ID: e07a4d

Hmm... might be a stretch, but ask if she knows anyone by Osman Neiro, and if not, maybe let her borrow the script or a copy of it and see if theres anything familiar in the story to her. Just ask if she wants to read or skim through it on her free time and get her thoughts on it.

If she doesnt recognize anything familiar, if anything, you can get a second opinion of the story. You might like the story, but having another person read it and seeing if they like it and getting their opinions too might be useful.
No. 1077478 ID: 8f9bc4

Osman Neiro
...No Sam Reno I
...Moans Iron e
...Snoman o' Ire
No. 1077572 ID: 11f77a
File 170034466668.png - (145.31KB , 550x500 , 090.png )

Marlene: It’s partially allowed--but it’s a lot of work. We would need to contact the author as soon as possible. Osman could either finish it or we could buy the rights, or co-write. Who knows?

Marlene: Then again, it could be thrown in the trash.

Marlene: Thing is, I don’t know how to approach what will happen to it. I’m sort of avoiding the studio for now. My mind’s been split apart about where the script will end up.

Maebe: Uh-huh.

>[…] starting to be genuinely worried for Osman […] If what he’s writing is true to life, that would explain why the script is unfinished.
Perhaps, yeah. I understand the best way to approach a story is to write from experience. I suppose I resonate with Jason (and through Jason, Osman) for having a lack of an ideal high school adventure. You know the type. I didn’t have an exciting teenage life, was pretty introverted, and I had often thought of alternate moments if I had only asked a boy out, or if I had only gone to prom, or smoked weed with the potheads. I managed to be lucky in college and met Seb along the way.

Never gravitated toward hard drugs though. That’s a blessing.

I’m interested to know what will happen to Jason, even if I have to write the ending myself.

>We are also unemployed
Well... I sure am. Maebe works at a piercing/tattoo parlor. The boys... I don’t know. It’s an awkward hour for them to synchronize a group together. Maybe they still take college courses.

>Ask if she knows anyone by Osman
>’Maebe’ there’s a connection (with Maeve)
Uuuh, doubtful. But--

Marlene: Have you heard of Osman Neiro?

Maebe: Nope. And if even you don’t recognize him as a famous screenwriter then perhaps he’s just a nobody trying to start out. Like you.

Maebe: No offense.
No. 1077573 ID: 11f77a
File 170034472441.png - (186.73KB , 550x500 , 091.png )

We reach the boys as they squabble and write some notes. Nick strums to demonstrate an echo-y effect that seems to sound pleasant enough. The keyboard is even set up.

Robin: Hey heeey! Maebe returns with a friend!

Nick: Nice!

Marlene: Boys.

The drummer turns to me with her hand wobbling on a horizontal line.

Maebe: Yeah, today is like a... whatever ya want kinda deal. Even though... it’s always been like that.

Nick: And I’m about to ask you a question.

I already answer him.

Marlene: Yes, I’ve been jotting down some lyrics. I think I know where to begin.

Robin: Sweeeet. So, how exactly does this work? Lyrics first, then write a song around them? Vice-versa?

Marlene: It feels like we’re just shootin’ the shit. As the due date hones in we could fine-tune it.

Robin: You sound pretty confident.

Marlene: I have gained a bit of confidence since yesterday.
No. 1077574 ID: 11f77a
File 170034482363.png - (133.76KB , 550x500 , 092.png )

Nick: Let’s get to work then!

Everyone goes to their respective corner. I huddle in mine and slip my notebook out. Those four lines are still prominent on this mostly-blank sheet of paper. It’s time to weave some lyrics around this bitch. Let’s see...
>A)...turn my head into beautiful sound...
>B)...drifting between pluto and calliope...
>C)...whisper me a little seed...
>D)...from the sky blooms a great noise...

I could start easy and match them in different stanzas. Which sounds like a ‘chorus’ line, or a ‘verse’ line? I’m sure Nick will throw in a guitar solo after the bridge. Nothing’s solid, of course, so there can be a chance for a pre-chorus or third verse down the line.
>1) Verse 1
>2) Verse 2
>3) Chorus
>4) Bridge

>Pair one letter to one number.
>Throw in any ideas or potential lines or lyric ideas if ya want, too.
No. 1077577 ID: 8f9bc4

No. 1077619 ID: 15a025

1. A, Turn my head into a beautiful sound
2. D, from the sky blooms a great noise.
3. C, Whisper me a little seed
4. B, I'm drifting between pluto and calliope!
No. 1077632 ID: eb0a9c

1C (Whisper in me a tiny little seed
2B (Callioped)
3A (Grow my head with a beautiful sound)
4D ()

Whisper in me a tiny mauve seed
That drifts 'tween Venus and Calliope
Grow in my head, a fractal voice
From the cosmos, a world-ending noise!

No. 1077768 ID: c5249f

B1 is a good establishing line, putting a setting into place,
A2 introduces the theme of sound and music
then a bridge from verse 2 to the chorus, so 4C in the third position
then 3D to have the "great noise" Juxtapose the "whisper"
No. 1077816 ID: c75e0b

B, then C, then A, and D.

B is great for setting the scene and connects to the imagery of entrapment in limbo.
C then is a plea for inspiration, an external source of aid, words like "need" "bleed" or "plead" would go well with it.
A follows this with the singer turning to listen, as if hearing an answer. It would also be great as a chorus, as the act of looking into the vastness looking for answers appears to be the central theme of the song.
Finally, D cements the idea of the plea fulfilled, inspiration stricking, and its seed bearing fruit.
No. 1078148 ID: 11f77a
File 170111618963.png - (148.58KB , 550x500 , 093.png )

After mixing and matching and trying to figure out what flows best, I believe I’ve set up a skeleton for my song. There seems to be a decent flow with these words.
>Verse 1: ...drifting between pluto and calliope...
>Verse 2: ...whisper me a little seed...
>Chorus: ...turn my head into beautiful sound...
>Bridge: ...from the sky blooms a great noise...

Even as the boys strum contorted noises from their guitars--occasionally interrupted by Maebe’s drums--I can focus just fine to jot down more lines.

Typically, there are four lines a verse. It may open with pluto and calliope, it may not. What does this line mean to me, exactly? I won’t try leaving this song up to interpretation to anyone--it's a song for me. It’s a song I want to listen to and everyone just has the privilege to hear it with me.
I could be the only person to understand the lyrics, perhaps Carter as well. It is a place--a place you may never experience in your life, and never grasp.


Verse 1
1. The first time’s an experience 2. The second, a coincidence 3. Drifting between pluto and calliope... 4. ...wordswordswords

There. That could be a good start for now.
No. 1078150 ID: 11f77a
File 170111629999.png - (125.75KB , 550x500 , 094.png )

I felt my phone just buzz. Looks like Dolly has finally responded.

Hey! Just saw your message! I found the envelope it came in. I’ll send ya the return address in a bit. There’s nothing else inside. I guess what you got is what you got! Here’s Osman’s number btw

Well, a shame that that’s all there is.
Least I received a number to call.
No. 1078151 ID: 8f9bc4


It's like a million times more than you had before. Plus you can check the area code!
No. 1078175 ID: 8efd29

It's time to make a call.

A Calliope
No. 1078274 ID: 11f77a
File 170127550070.png - (134.55KB , 550x500 , 095.png )

I make a quick search of the area code; it looks to be set in Michigan. That probably makes sense since Silenus is the closest semi-major studio within a handful of states--versus Hollywood or Universal. It’s a 50-50 between us and Bacchus Pictures where it ends up.

I find a spot to slink to with less noise. It seems like a good time to call right now; it’s not during a busy hour. The phone rings and I’m a bit nervous--I rarely just jump to calling someone like this!

???: Hello?

Oh shit. Someone answered!

Marlene: Huh--Hello! Hi! Uh--my name is Marlene. Collins. Marlene Collins. Would this be Osman? Uh--Osman Neiro?

There’s a slight chuckle, like a misunderstanding.

???: Sorry, this is his son speaking. Osman, uh--my father, had passed away several years ago. I’m Devon; I’ve been taking care of any late calls regarding him.

Devon: How can I help you, Marlene?
No. 1078275 ID: f14228

(Huh. Years ago? When was this half-finished script sent in, and by whom? The backlog on these couldn't have been that bad - could it? Oh. Dolly did suggest these were bound for the shredder, didn't she?)

Say your condolences and ask for the son's full name, address, actual phone number, anything of the sort, so you can get back in touch later if you need to. For now, you have a tentative interest in touching base with any of Osman's relatives and/or estate.

Explain there exists a movie script written in his father's name, once upon a time sent to Silenus Industries. It's currently being unofficially reviewed by you and it appears to show real promise. Now, you are not the final arbiter of that, but you could push it back up the ladder or advice Osman's relatives how to give this sort of inheritance the treatment it may deserve.

Problem is the script is missing parts. Either it was never turned in fully or it was lost to some organizatorial shuffle at the studio, which does lower the odds of the rights ever getting bought up. If a more complete version of this script existed you'd love to review it fully. If "Jason" came in a more complete form, it might stand a genuine chance to made into a proper film.

(though maybe not with Silenus, unless they're willing to take the gamble of not passing it past the three black sheep of conformity)

Did Devon know his father had screenwriting ambitions?
No. 1078277 ID: debc82


Well, that makes things easier (and far harder). Did Devon send in a manuscript in his father's name?

If so, we got it, but it looks like there might be a few pages missing, so if he might know where the rest is, that'd be a huge help.
No. 1078480 ID: 11f77a
File 170154591123.png - (123.95KB , 550x500 , 096.png )

>Say your condolences
>if he might know where the rest [of the script] is, that’d be a huge help
Marlene: Oh! I’m... I’m sorry for your loss, Devon. I, uhm, I just have a script in my hands that was sent to Silenus Industries with your father’s name. I suppose you would be the final arbiter of that.

Devon: Oh, you have my father’s story? You said it was Silenus?

Marlene: Yeah. I’ve been reading scripts for a friend--sort of an unofficial review. Your father submitted a screenplay titled: Jason in the Kaleidoscope. It must’ve been in such a terrible backlog to finally reach us.

Marlene: I’m sorry it’s taken years to finally bring some good news, a few years too late it seems.

Devon: I thank you for the good news, but he hadn’t sent it. That was actually me!

Marlene: Oh?

Devon: It must’ve been almost a year ago.

Marlene: Ah, I see. Well... huh. I don't quite know how to... proceed with that. The script is missing a few parts. I was hoping if you have a completed version.

The voice on the other line is a pondering hum.

Devon: I’m a bit on the spot here. I think it’s best if I explain at the beginning--
No. 1078481 ID: 11f77a
File 170154610155.png - (110.66KB , 550x500 , 097.png )

Devon: My father was a teacher in social studies and tragology. He found writing to be his favorite pastime.

Devon: He’d come home, have his dinner, watch TV, and at 8-on-the-dot he’d go straight into the basement to write.

Devon: As a kid, I always knew he enjoyed it. He never really shared what he was writing. I guess there was a time where Mom and I let it be.

Devon: He was still a good father.

Devon: Alas, he had never published anything.

Marlene: I see.

Devon: Last year my wife and I were cleaning out his basement and there were boxes of papers from all those years--all sitting there waiting.

Devon: It was my wife who convinced me to try and sell them.

Devon: So I sent many of them as-is. I’ve sent copies to different publishers and studios far and wide, I haven’t kept count. There were some replies but mostly rejects. And that’s all fine and dandy.
No. 1078482 ID: 11f77a
File 170154616789.png - (137.20KB , 550x500 , 098.png )

Devon: My father...

Devon: I don’t know. I can’t help but imagine a whole life of many missed opportunities, all this time, when he was merely a teacher in a small town.

Devon: I felt I could try to do him justice and get at least one book published.

Devon: If I could do that... maybe that’d put his soul at peace. Or something.

Devon: Maybe for once his name can be a blip in history, even the tiniest blip would do. It doesn’t even have to be successful book or movie; just that for once his work is out there for the world to see.

Devon: It’s a bit silly how I’m trying to describe it. But perhaps you understand.

Devon: I fear that the script might be all there is. I certainly haven’t added anything more. I may have made a mistake and didn’t see it was unfinished.
No. 1078483 ID: 32c482

Honestly? Publishing it as is and having a scene where it cuts to Osman writing in the basement could solidify it as an artsy cult-classic. But maybe it'd be okay if it was finished.
No. 1078484 ID: 8f9bc4

That's good news because it means it can be finished. The hard part would be figuring out how Osman would have finished it. Which leads to the bad news: the answer is going to be buried in those boxes full of unfinished manuscripts, if it hasn't died with Osman himself. Ready to become a historian, ghostwriting for a ghost?

Anyway thank Devon and tell him it's a bit more than you signed up for, but you'll see what you can do. His father was a fantastic writer, and there's at least a small chance that someone might be able to pull this one off.
No. 1078491 ID: eb0a9c

I think we can manage with what we've got. Just ask for full permission on behalf of the studio to edit, re-contextualize, and generally overhaul the script. What matters is that it's a great base, and the studio's job is to make it a complete product.
No. 1078510 ID: 8f9bc4

Wait... what's tragology?
No. 1078511 ID: f14228

No worries, you get it. You want that blip too, some days. Though a lifetime spent teaching doesn't sound like all opportunities missed, per se. Sociology and... tragology, was it? You're not sure you're familiar with the field. Does it relate to study of the classic tragedies?

Hm. There may be pieces of a more complete variant in one of those boxes. There's seldom only one draft as ideas are iterated and developed over time. There could be early notes, abstracts or summaries that could help point the way Jason's story could've gone. Maybe let some other writer pick it up in a way that does the rest some honor.

(Though if Devon got some other writer - say you - to finish the second half, they'd obviously add their own touches, and for movie adaptations the studio will have its due on the cutting floor as well - usually. It also sounds like his son wants his father to gain some recognition out there for the work being his. Might be an issue if you'd want recognition of your own for, like, coming up with half the story, rather than be a ghost author's ghost writer.)

Devon would know best whether there's any hope of that existing, though. You can at least state that the Jason script as-is has captivated you, a fellow tryhard in the literary arts, so his father did good on that one. You're glad to have read it and sad to hear it may lack a second half altogether. Honestly, if the first half shows this much potential... it need not be over yet. For any of Devon's hopes here.

Unless Osman was really poor at sticking landings, it may be many of the rejections of his father's works were more out of a lack of name recognition, of not actually reading the application properly (all too easy if it got sent in semi-incomplete and old/oddly structured formats, seeing as his son just took copies of what was there and sent it in), or unwillingness to try unique-ish and untested ideas and themes, even if the story seems great. Rejection reasons sadly all too present in the industry. Hearing the original writer is dead may also have been a turn-off - did any of the studios that responded be frank about their reasons for not following up?

You do feel if Devon could find someone to finish this story, based on notes or not, the core tale here may have the potential to become a classic. A cult one, for sure.

You can't promise anything, but if he's got anything else he'd like to send your way - or if he lives close enough - you'd welcome the opportunity to read more of Osman's works and provide your honest assessment, maybe even a bit of aid. You doubt you'd be able to jump straight to do Jason's second half justice, but you do have some spare time on your hand to work on a draft, a start, something. Unpaid work in this day and age (and in your situation) is a bit eesh though.

Hm. Also this is not the kind of offer you need drop now - could work up to it - but maybe there's an opportunity for a trade, of sorts? You spend effort looking over his father's stories and use your ex-movie studio secretary-fu to send them off how and where they might stand a better chance of actually getting picked up by somebody, fulfilling Devon's wish. And he gives you the right to attempt to wrap up Jason. If no notes for the second half exists, that is.
No. 1078517 ID: 15a025

As bitter as the situation here might seem. It might cheer Devon up a bit if you gush a bit over how much you liked that one script.

Ask and see if maybe he'd like to get together on another call sometime and discuss maybe coming up with an ending his father would be proud of.
No. 1078978 ID: 11f77a
File 170208298993.png - (155.04KB , 550x500 , 099.png )

>You get it. You want that blip too, some days
I can’t imagine turning old and looking at myself in the mirror, and never having published anything. Then again, I could get hit by a bus tomorrow for all I know.

Marlene: I totally get what you mean. There are days I want that blip too--I'm an aspiring writer myself.

Marlene: But for what it’s worth, Devon, I really loved reading the script. Your father’s writing is impressive and very captivating for a tragologist.

>What’s tragology? The study of tragedies?
*like the study of humans is anthropo-logy, tragos or trago-logy is a made-up term for the study of goats and caprine cultures. Also, side fact, the etymology of tragedy is made up of tragos (goat) and oide (song).

He chuckles with me.

>Ask for full permission on behalf of the studio to edit, re-contextualize, and overhaul the script.
Marlene: I’ve dealt with the process where studios buy scripts from small screenwriters. If I’m able to convince Silenus to pick it up, they could offer a deal to purchase the rights. From there they could modify or finish it however they want.

Marlene: There’s a good chance you could come in and write the rest yourself--or find any notes regarding it.

Devon: Oh, I could try and find anything Osman has to help, but I’m afraid I know absolutely nothing when it comes to writing stories--unless it involves a tax consultant.

Devon: It would be in better hands with professionals.

Marlene: If it pulls through, they’ll contact you. You should be proud that your father’s work has made it this far.

Devon: I am! It’s wonderful news!
No. 1078980 ID: 11f77a
File 170208318742.png - (122.08KB , 550x500 , 100.png )

>Ready to become a historian, ghostwriting for a ghost?
>Might be an issue if you’d want recognition of your own […] rather than be a […] ghost writer.
Honestly, I’m not that uptight about sharing work or recognition. Sure, I’d love to have the glory to myself (who wouldn’t)--but this is my chance to find my bearings and get my foot in the door again. I should gladly take it, despite the tension I have about that place.

I give him my number.

Marlene: Thank you for the talk, Devon; I’m happy to have reached you. I haven’t read a good script like this in a while; it’s new and inspiring and it’d be a shame if it never reaches the producer’s desk.

Devon: I’m very happy to hear that. I can’t wait to tell my wife about this!

Devon: I could recheck for any notes in the meantime. I’ll keep an eye on the phone in case you call again.

Marlene: Have a good evening, Devon.

Devon: You too, Ms. Collins.


That went better than expected, but that’s only the easy part. If I were to write the rest of the script would I channel through Osman’s writing--or interpret with my own style? I would do my best to stay true to the original source.
No. 1078981 ID: 11f77a
File 170208326824.png - (156.45KB , 550x500 , 101.png )

I return to the basement; Maebe notices me.

Maebe: Hey, who were you talking to?

Marlene: It was Osman’s son. Turns out the author of this script has passed away years ago.

Maebe: Aye.

Marlene: His next of kin will take care of the negotiations if Silenus picks it up.

Marlene: Thing is, that also means someone else will have to finish it.

Maebe: That gonna be you?

Marlene: Oh, well, maybe! I do want to see this to the end.

Marlene: ...

Marlene: You think I can pull that off?

Maebe: I don’t see why not. How many stories have you published?

Maebe: And another thing before I forget--if you have no plans later tonight...

Maebe: ...ya wanna hang out some place? Maybe at a bar? We could finally talk about shit without the boys blasting noise in our ears.
No. 1078995 ID: 8f9bc4

Sure! You know of a good bar just down the uhhhhhhhhhhh... you... don't get out much.
No. 1079017 ID: eb0a9c

When was the last time you plowed your BF?
No. 1079060 ID: 15a025

Sure! Heard there's some kind of special over at Hammered Horns, sound good?
No. 1079972 ID: 11f77a
File 170379938808.png - (109.50KB , 550x500 , 102.png )

>When was the last time you plowed your BF?
Literally last night, man.

Marlene: Sure! I know a good bar just down the-- uuuuuh...

Marlene: Yeah, I don’t know of any bar. I don’t go out much.

Maebe: I’d be surprised if you had. But don’t worry--I got a usual place we can meet. Ever heard of Hammered Horns?

Marlene: Oh? It sounds... familiar; I don’t think I’ve been inside.

Maebe: Well if you still feel like stopping by, I’ll be there around seven anyway.

Marlene: Sounds good. As soon as I drop off these scripts to Dolly I’ll u-turn straight to Hammered Horns then. My schedule is always free.
No. 1079975 ID: 11f77a
File 170379954615.png - (175.66KB , 550x500 , 103.png )

I stay for more than an hour. The boys are honing their tunes and I oughta admit they’re catching onto a passable riff. But I’ve been staring at the same verse over and over. I like it, but I want a final line. There are too many words already in this verse and I wouldn’t want to cram it. I must be careful and simple.

The first time’s an experience The second, a coincidence Drifting between pluto and calliope
and I’m gone

Something’s still missing though; perhaps it’s not me. It’s their playing. They’re not quite ‘getting’ it. Robin is a bit on track with his thrumming bass lines but Nick needs to be roped in.

He’s constantly breaking off to try something that clashes the vibe.

Marlene: More distortion.

Nick stops and spins to me.

Nick: Huh?

Marlene: I want it to blend. I want a mash of noise. I want atmosphere. I want the roar of a plane far in the sky be reduced to a metallic groan stretched across the heavens.

Nick: But you might not even hear the notes if it’s a mash-up.

Marlene: I don’t want to hear your notes now. Nobody wants to hear your notes. You don’t force a thing like that. You always do that--you attempt to stick out from the rest of the band when everyone should try blending together.

Robin: Gosh. Take it easy, Marlene. He’ll catch on something. He’s just feeling around..

Marlene: He’s always going to be feeling around. If Nick can’t hear himself, his solution is to be louder and distinct. He needs to try hearing the song as a whole for once.
No. 1080038 ID: e4407a

Haaah, cant have a band without arguments like this. Maybe you need a break to think things through, youve been overworking yourself. Maybe the chaotic nature of the script your reading is influencing what you want in the music? Maybe seperate those from each other a little.

Yeah take a break, maybe consider giving nick a solo somewhere in the song, like somewhere early on so hes heard.
No. 1080045 ID: dd3fe0

Well, do you have a number that's an excuse for each person to show their stuff? Is it any good? Could you use a new one?
No. 1080046 ID: eb0a9c

>Last line
Turning away from my destined death
I'm still gone

>Nick wants to solo
Have the chorus drown him in the cosmos. As long as you make sure the guitarist isn't a demigod, it will display sufficient existentialism to have his strongest solo outdone by the whisper of what the whole band is invoking.
No. 1080066 ID: 8f9bc4

The first time’s an experience
The second, a coincidence
Drifting between pluto and calliope
Just as a for instance-idence.
Like that artist formerly known as Prince-idence.
Where space is very cold-not-dense.
No. 1080106 ID: 15a025

"Drifting between pluto and calliope
Was it even meant to beee?

No, I'm fading, fading till I'm gone!"

As for better advice to give Nick. Just record them playing as is and have him listen to it. It might help him step back to hear what's wrong and better understand what's needed.
No. 1080283 ID: 11f77a
File 170431638477.png - (143.22KB , 550x500 , 104.png )

Nick: Hey if we’re going to be any good for the audition, we need to really capture the audience with a strong lead.

Marlene: That’s not what shoegaze is about though. I mean... dream pop has its moments, but the guitar doesn’t veer off into an 80s hair metal solo.

Nick: I dunno--are we trying to send people to sleep then?

Marlene: I’m only asking for something softer that doesn’t clash so hard.

The bassist chimes in before we talk in circles.

Robin: You know what; I think I have a solution.

>Just record them playing as-is and have him listen to it.
>Do you have a number for each person to show their stuff?
Robin: We should share our emails--or maybe even join a group messenger that can share audio. That way we can just... send snippets on our own time and discuss.

Maebe: Oh, like the Harmony app?

Robin: Right! Harmony! What’s Harmony?

Maebe: Exactly what you described. It’s not a perfect app--probably in beta for a few months--but it should be sufficient if you know how to cut and paste audio.

Robin: Yeah, sounds neat! Right guys? Then we can show up to our jam sessions with a little bit of direction, huh?

Nick: I guess I can be cool with that.

Marlene: I agree. In fact, maybe I can share a playlist of the sound I to replicate. But, uh, I suppose we all can share what we want to pitch in by then.

Maebe: So it’s settled. I already have an account but I’ll invite you all later today.
No. 1080284 ID: 11f77a
File 170431654079.png - (174.39KB , 550x500 , 105.png )

>Maybe you need a break to think things through, you’ve been overworking yourself.
I don’t have much to contribute after that--I give Nick his space and return to my corner. The room will be cluttered with experimental sound again. Perhaps I’m concentrating too hard--or better yet need a quieter place to sit and write.

Marlene: I’m going to step out on the porch; I could use some fresh air.

Maebe: I’m joining, then. I really need a smoke.
Flash forward to her porch where I slump on the dumpster couch. Maebe lights one up with a huff and billows smoke out her nose like a dragon. She points at my notes.

Maebe: Looks like you’ve written quite a bit already. Were you able to unscramble the word salad you’ve jotted down yesterday?

Marlene: Yep. I’ve brought it down to four lines I really like. I’ve sectioned them and now I’m working on the first verse.

She motions for me to pass the notebook. Her eyes glance up and down the many variations of lyrics.

Maebe: “The first time’s an experience...

Maebe: “Turning away from my destined death...

Marlene: Do you think that’s a bit too... emo or something?

Maebe: “Like the artist formerly known as Prince-idence...

Marlene: Ignore that one. It’s crossed out.

Maebe: “Was it ever meant to be--

Maebe: “Drifting between pluto and calliope.

She gently hands it back.

Maebe: Sounds... poetic, I guess. Where’d you even get the inspiration for this? Falling in love? No offense but, heh, I never took you for the romantic type.
No. 1080289 ID: 913c45

"It came to me in a dream"
No. 1080290 ID: 4024f1

And give no further context
No. 1080291 ID: 273c18

Tell her you're trying to put to words the experience and emotions you're getting from a recurring dream.
No. 1080505 ID: 15a025

Some pretty weird things have been going on at night. There's this reoccurring dream I keep having.
No. 1080628 ID: 11f77a
File 170475233857.png - (152.02KB , 550x500 , 106.png )

>Some pretty weird things have been going on at night.
>Tell her you’re trying to put to words the experience and emotions you’re getting from a recurring dream.
I haven’t quite explained my recent behavior regarding the dream. Perhaps it was too subtle to pick up. In general, the Gaps are in the dark about my meetings with Carter. I ought to at least share a bit of my recent experiences.

Marlene: Have you ever woken up from a dream and it somewhat changes you?

Maebe: Like Scrooge?

Marlene: Come on...

Maebe: I can remember some dreams, but nah. I guess realizing it wasn’t real all along helps me ignore it. But I get’cha.

Marlene: I’ve been having a recurring one; it’s like being in an orange ocean with the sun shining through. It’s been happening the past few nights.

Maebe: Maybe it’s something you’re eating. Sometimes eating or mixing weird junk before bed can produce similar dreams each night.

Marlene: It’s not like that. While weird, it’s vivid and... lucid. But it aint a trip; it’s a wonderful place. I want to be there and I’m happy to be back.

Marlene: I’m doing my best to put that to words. Maybe no one will ever relate to it, or maybe there’s a small number out there who understand.

Marlene: But since those nights, I’ve slowly felt confidence within myself. So perhaps it’s a good direction to go.

Maebe: I’d say take what you can from it, girl. Could be your ticket out of here.
No. 1080629 ID: 11f77a
File 170475239307.png - (158.83KB , 550x500 , 107.png )

I check the time. Looks like I ought to go before Silenus closes down for the day.

Marlene: I have to send off these awful scripts now. I’ll work more on our song tomorrow.

Maebe: You take care, then. And don’t forget about tonight if you’re still up to hang at Hammered Horns. If you don’t show then that’s alright--you’re a busy girl.

Maebe: See ya around--and don’t forget your backpack.

I collect my things and skip down the porch steps. I’m back to flipping through the script to where I left off. I’ll text Dolly to meet me outside the studio when I’m close.

There’s still a small chapter left for me to analyze--it’s a short bit until the author wrote no more.
No. 1080630 ID: 11f77a
File 170475246638.png - (296.48KB , 550x500 , 108.png )

[>>1068908] Vodka & Soda
[>>1070316] Conflicting Memories
[>>1073379] The Prom
We open to a new scene.
I’m waiting. I sit here. I wonder when I’ll be taken away again. I’m afraid to do anything before I’m whiplashed into another time--possibly in a worse condition than this.

How long has it been since the prom? Several months? Have I always been in this timeline with memories of another? Have those moments never happen?

Sometimes I wonder if I had jumped to another timeline without realizing it. Or jumped in my sleep. What I can remember now is that this timeline involves Carol. Or was it Maeve? Probably is Maeve, this whole room smells like cat piss; must be her apartment. Cigarette burns in the carpet. I’ve been ignoring home. I haven’t been able to keep up with grades. I’ve practically been expelled from school by now.

What’s even the point? Anything that makes me happy is constantly interrupted--constantly yanked away like a cruel joke. Everything I work hard to achieve seems pointless. Why bother moving from this couch? It’s hard to remember my... my original timeline.

I could at least get up and take another hit to calm down. Least the drugs help me ignore what I’m going through.

I hear somebody’s car pull in the driveway. Maeve could be back. I’m starting to feel sick of her. But she loves me and I have no one else.

Maybe think about the good days. The days I’m with Ells or... even Roxanne. I can close my eyes and imagine what they could be doing right now. If I’m lucky--they’ll open and I’ll be with them again.

Or nothing. I dunno. Do nothing. Why even do anything? Maybe nap on the floor.
No. 1080631 ID: d759b8

4th option makes the most sense. Youre so exhausted.
No. 1080638 ID: 8f9bc4


Find someone else. You need help, and Maeve clearly can't do it. It's not fair to her that you have no one else, you need to freaking commit yourself or something. You don't even know what reality is anymore. Call your mom? Your brother? Just a random person on the street? There's got to be some support for you, that doesn't disappear like it was never there.
No. 1080642 ID: 17abec

Go check who's here before getting ready to dedicate your life to her. Could be someone you haven't seen in a while, or maybe a package? Maybe someone's delivering your nobel prize for being involved in this timeline aberration situation
No. 1080661 ID: 76615e

If your external reality keeps changing on you perhaps it is time to look inward. Try some meditation. try to find the core of who you are across these timelines.
No. 1080678 ID: dd3fe0


This specific situation, with these drugs, is horrible for meditation though. You'd want to change your context a bit. At the very least go outside.
No. 1080783 ID: 3660f4

Definitely try and sort yourself first. You can't get control of the jumping, but you've got one life in shambles and one life you wish you've done everything you could to make perfect.

Why does it have to be that way? If this is the life you keep bouncing back to, why not make intentional efforts to improve it here? Use some of the confidence and wisdom you've built up living a whole second life and build some inner fortitude instead of holding onto the other life as a potential escape.
No. 1080810 ID: 11f77a
File 170502940794.png - (262.94KB , 550x500 , 109.png )

>Try some meditation. Try to find the core of who you are across these timelines.
It’s difficult to seek a common trait, but that doesn’t mean I won’t try. I’m so jumbled up right now and it’s worse being a teenager with no direction. We Jasons become so aware of our other realities that it takes a moment to get over shock or misery.

Meditation could work, I suppose; I just need to clean my life up first. I have to wrangle my lives together. One question I have is: do all those other Jasons exist right now? Simultaneously? Or is everything rewritten as I go along?

>If this is the life you keep bouncing back to, why not make intentional efforts to improve it here?
>You need to freaking commit yourself or something. […] Call your mom? […] There’s got to be some support for you that doesn’t disappear like it was never there.
With only enough energy to lift my phone; Mom is the only person I may have to depend on. I know she can always be there--despite how I pushed her away. Maeve is becoming too much, now. She’ll be the end of me if I live any longer down this path.

Ugh, I can’t take it anymore. I’m so fucking sick. I want to throw up right now. I resist curling up to do nothing.


Mom: Hello?

Mom: ...

Mom: Jason?

Mom: Oh, Jason...

Mom: You can talk to me. Are you okay right now?

I choke a bit--what do I even say?
No. 1080814 ID: 24179a

Ask her to come pick you up.
No. 1080826 ID: 273c18

No. 1080849 ID: 3660f4

"I-it's bad, mom. I need help."

Cry, if you have it in you. Not to sell it to her, but to let all the hopelessness and pain have some sort of release.
No. 1080952 ID: 15a025

What's the nearest store or building you can think of? Ask your mom if she can pick you up there. Leave now before Maeve can talk you out of it and snare you in this awful relationship.
No. 1081204 ID: 11f77a
File 170544898418.png - (248.44KB , 550x500 , 110.png )

There’s a torrent of thoughts waiting to burst and I can’t even begin on one. But I can summarize how I’m feeling right now. Miserable. Exhausted.

Jase: No.

Jase: No, I’m not okay...

Jase: I can’t... be here anymore.

Mom: Hun...

Jase: I-It’s bad, mom. I’m just so tired and I need to get out.

Jase: I’ve made some bad choices.

Jase: But I think it’s time to go home.

I can hear some movement through the phone.

Mom: I’ll come get you. Find a safe place and stay put, honey. Just tell me where you are and I can pick you up.

I have to get out of here before Maeve sees me. She’ll try to talk me out of this. I need to get up...
No. 1081205 ID: 11f77a
File 170544900690.png - (302.50KB , 550x500 , 111.png )

Jase: I’m... I’m in the city. West Syorn.

Jase: I don’t have a place to stay--

It’s a drive for them. I must endure in the cold.

Jase: I’ll try to stay inside somewhere. Maybe...

Jase: The mall. I can try and reach the mall.

Jase: Remember the mall with the koi fish? Leonard managed to grab one and tossed it at me. It flopped around. You thought I did it and told me to grab it and put it back. We left before security arrived.

Mom: Yes! Yes I do. I’ll be there. It’ll be a while but hang in there.

Jase: I’ll try to hold on.
No. 1081206 ID: 11f77a
File 170544903957.png - (198.62KB , 550x500 , 112.png )

Mom: I can stay on the phone. I’m grabbing your father now. We just want you back home safe, honey.

‘I know,’ I whisper with barely any energy left in my voice.

The door swings open. The visitor kicks it hard, wood splinters from the doorway.

That’s not Maeve.

I do recognize him. One of my... well... mutuals. Garvey, I think. He clutches his hands around a shotgun.

He stares at me, terrified. Bloodshot. I’m terrified. I don’t know if it’s for his life or he knows he may have to go through with something. I’ve no idea about his business here.
No. 1081207 ID: 11f77a
File 170544914983.png - (230.95KB , 550x500 , 113.png )

Garvey: Jason?

Garvey: Jase! I knew I’d find you here!!

I try to muffle the phone against my chest.

Jase: Y-Yo. What the hell’s going on?

Garvey: Jaaaase. Buddy. I need it. I know you have it but this is...

Garvey: ...an emergency.

He points the gun at me.

Garvey: I know we’re solid. We’re solid people. You’re a cool guy. And I’m sorry to do this to ya but I aint gonna fuck around.

Garvey: I need that two-grand we got--I shit you not I’ll fucking find it one way or another so let’s get this over and done with!

Garvey: It would’ve been anyone, maaan. No disrespect.

Mom: Hon, are you there?

Garvey: Where is it?! I’m sorry for bugging out like this but I neeeed that money.
No. 1081211 ID: 3a8aa9

woah let's all calm down... I bet that gun isn't even loaded. Stare him down. Show him that you've been broken across timelines and the end of a barrel is far from the most unnerving thing you've seen. Keep it calm. Just glare.

But if you want to be a little aggro, wait for the opportunity and punish his right. Table flips.

Or if you want the safer? option, Kaleidoscope into another timeline, reposition behind Garvey, hit 'em with the nothing personal.
No. 1081219 ID: dd3fe0

Horrible idea. Never act as if life is a poorly written action/comedy movie. If someone is pointing a gun at you, you MUST assume it is loaded and you do whatever they tell you to except get in the car or go to a second place or whatever. Yea, you immediately be seen to cooperate with him. The whole, 'sure, yea, I'll get it, no problem, it's just money, can you point that away from me so you don't accidentally shoot me?' And then go and get it and set it aside in his line of sight and back off.
No. 1081223 ID: 5ebd37

No sudden moves, act casual.
"Sure man, its in the box in the back. You know the one. I was just headin out, so go ahead and take whatever you need."
No. 1081228 ID: eb0a9c

"Garvey, I'm going to get on the ground, where I can't bolt, and you're going to point the gun away from me. Please, your finger's twitching."
No. 1081231 ID: 8f9bc4

Cry, if you have it in you! Please tell me you have it in you!
No. 1081233 ID: e51896

tell him he can have whatever money you have in your account cause you're quitting. In return, he needs to stays silent about your departure to Maeve.
No. 1081357 ID: 3660f4

Do we want to say this loud enough for mom to hear? If mom's on the phone, is that going to cause problems with this guy?

"Dude what the fuck?! Okay. Just. Put the gun down man. You can have the money. Let's go get it. Just don't point that thing at me."

Proceed to tell mom you'll be there soon and hang up before she can respond, as a show of good faith to Garvey.
No. 1081462 ID: 11f77a
File 170578977061.png - (211.85KB , 550x500 , 114.png )

>Kaleidoscope into another timeline
Wish I could, on command...

>I bet that gun isn’t even loaded. Stare him down.
Jase: Bullshit.

Garvey: The fuck you say?

Jase: You’re a crazy son of a bitch but you know you wouldn’t have to shove a gun in my face to get what you need.

Jase: Probably isn’t even loaded. Why don’t you just fucking ask?

Jase: You’re tweaking out, Garvey. The gun isn’t necessary. Okay? We’re all friends here, right?

I cautiously stand up without any sudden movements in case that gun is ready. I take small steps forward.

Jase: Come on, man. Put that gun down. What’s got you so worked up?

He keeps it steady on me. He makes one step back.

Garvey: Ah, you know. Bills. Debts. Some come sooner than others.

Garvey: Now stop right there. That’s close enough! Just take me to wherever you’re stashing it.

He gestures his gun aside to have me turn around. I take the chance to lunge--
No. 1081463 ID: 11f77a
File 170578980685.png - (176.92KB , 550x500 , 115.png )

And then...

I feel...


I’m falling.
No. 1081465 ID: 11f77a
File 170579008681.png - (284.98KB , 550x500 , 116.png )

Wait. Was that what happened?

I’m sitting; staring at the barrel again, I see no smoke.

Jase: L-Listen... Garvey. Man.

Jase: You can have whatever you want. I don’t care. I-I think Maeve keeps it in a box in the bathroom. Th-There’s a hole behind the medicine cabinet. Just put the gun down.

Jase: Or I’ll just... lay flat or something--

Garvey: No! Get up and show me, then. Sooner, the better I fuck off.

He’s shaky. God, I hope he doesn’t pull the trigger on accident.

Do I dare imagine the times he has?

I heard--that when you hold someone at gunpoint even if they are unarmed with their hands showing, you always get a false sense that they still have a weapon on them.

I cautiously get up with my hands in the air. I manage to make a quick response on the phone before standing completely.

Jase: O-One moment mom...

Taking steady breaths, I walk. He follows.

It’s strange; the world feels the same yet something’s off about this one. Picking up where I left off, so to speak? I’m trying to get over what just happened. I felt it, the impact; then it never happened at all. Was I lucky to jump that instant? Was it after I had died?

Garvey: I don't have all day...
No. 1081466 ID: 8f9bc4

It's your superpower. Like with the car at the very beginning. You get to be an idiot, and then not be an idiot.
No. 1081469 ID: eb0a9c

He's so afraid that he doesn't realize he's becoming their trigger-happy disposable goon. What the hell did they threaten him with?
No. 1081499 ID: 15a025

Jase, I think you've been chosen to be the main character, so to speak.
Whatever it is your going through, the multiple timelines/universes. It's not letting you out just because a foreign force wants to expel you.

Let Garvey think he's getting the money. Then when the moment's right. Wrestle the gun out of his hands and tell him to fuck off.
No. 1081512 ID: dd3fe0


Or you could, you know, not make any sudden moves, let him have the money and let him go peacefully.

That's a thing. Something bad happened when you tried to do the cinematic thing last time.
No. 1081517 ID: 5ebd37

You're clearly not an action star. Just get him the money and you can both leave. You've got to get to that mall.
No. 1082144 ID: 11f77a
File 170664953820.png - (178.57KB , 550x500 , 117.png )

>It’s not letting you out just because a foreign force wants to expel you.
>It’s your superpower. [...] You get to be an idiot, and then not be an idiot.
Something’s not letting me... die? Do I take advantage of that? So every time I die I could simply jump to a new body? What fucked up shit is that?! What happens to the dead Jason? Shit...

Have I died from being run over by the car? I don’t remember the impact--but thinking back on that moment often felt surreal.

>Just get him the money and you can both leave.
>Let him have the money and let him go peacefully.
I see glimpses of other Jasons as I walk down the hallway too. It feels like living in several different bodies. Or like... I can follow one path as it unfolds.

I reach the bathroom and shake the medicine cabinet free. There’s the aluminum box, dusty with drywall debris.

Just... give Garvey the money. Be careful and hand the money over...


...no sudden movements...

I fucked up.
No. 1082145 ID: 11f77a
File 170664957033.png - (304.08KB , 550x500 , 118.png )

Jase: I keep fucking up.

Jase: I’m given chances to do something different yet--

Jase: I always end up in a worse place. And yet, I can see all the times I’ve succeeded now and then. And I just don’t know how to... get there.

Jase: I get so frustrated with myself and yell at all of them. ‘How?!’
No. 1082147 ID: 11f77a
File 170664961879.png - (277.36KB , 550x500 , 119.png )

‘How come you get to be so lucky? How come fortune smiles on you and leaves me here to wallow in such... misery?’

What am I being punished for?

Is it punishment?

I don’t even know sometimes.

But I’m starting to realize how I got here, now.

I used to accept that my fate was written this way. That in this life I was deemed to be the loser--I lost the coin toss--and it would never change.
No. 1082148 ID: 11f77a
File 170664968089.png - (283.83KB , 550x500 , 120.png )

Jase: ...

Jase: I pushed you away.

Jase: I shouldn’t have pushed you away like that. I was a dumb kid. I didn’t know. I wouldn’t have known.

Jase: I didn’t care--I didn’t think. I only wanted to be left alone after Len’s death. I couldn’t realize that it was you who needed me the most.

Jase: And I never gave you that chance to grieve and heal.

Jase: I still don’t know which of my lives are real, or my own. But I know they all need help.
No. 1082151 ID: 11f77a
File 170664994356.png - (269.87KB , 550x500 , 121.png )

Jase: I don’t know if I’m making any sense with this--if any of it gets through to you.

Jase: But that's okay.

Jase: You may not always be there for me, but there’ll be times where I can only rely on myself or... ‘my-selves’ to figure out what’s going on.

Mom: Jason? JASON!

Maybe if I can at least save this life and close one chapter, the rest may realize the same solution before it’s too late for them.
No. 1082153 ID: 598d4a

So you're trying to reach a singularity by doing what you'd do across all of the timelines, you might be able to realign yourself with one reality?
No. 1082154 ID: eb0a9c

I wonder.
Is your power somehow siphoning... Charisma? Luck? Energy? The more you use precognition, the less resources you have to capitalize on it?

That still means you get extra lives.

Rip the medicine cabinet from the wall and throw it in his face.
No. 1082180 ID: 8f9bc4

It could work... if you were the only thing that was changing. The solution that saves you when Lem comes out of nowhere to tackle Garvey isn't going to save you in the lives where Lem is dead. It may be possible to achieve some sort of resonance, however. A harmony between the 'you's that becomes a self-reinforcing stability. Act similar to how they do even if it doesn't make sense, maybe it'll pull the timelines together. A thousand different voices can still all sing the same note.
No. 1082189 ID: 273c18

It looks like either you die or he dies, and the police don't believe you for some reason or another which means if you don't die you wind up in jail or on the run.

So if we win, we lose, and if we lose, we lose. If there was supposed to be a situation here that we're meant to be able to solve I sure as fuck don't see it, QM.
No. 1082279 ID: dd3fe0

We need more information. Most Catch-22s, in real life, have an optimal solution, even if it isn't what is presented as the 'given' scenario.
No. 1082316 ID: 11f77a
File 170689917179.png - (174.52KB , 550x500 , 122.png )

Okay. I think I can piece together how this mindfuck works. I’ve been picking up pieces since it started happening--so I could try to keep my footing as best I can when I unexpectedly jump again.

>Is your power somehow siphoning charisma? Luck? The more you use precognition, the fewer resources you have to capitalize on it?
I don’t have the power to see the future. All timelines I’ve witnessed and jumped to were parallel and simultaneous.

At exactly 2:34pm Tuesday in August I’m sitting here in the mall. I would jump and now it’s 2:34pm Tuesday in August and I’m wrestling a gun out of Garvey’s hands. Or I’m in prison for a different crime in the past. Or see glimpses of myself giving him the money. Or maybe there was a gun behind the cabinet instead; or sure, I throw the cabinet in his face and initiate a fight.

All these Jasons have made choices or were affected by events in the past which either changed their lives drastically or very subtly. Long and short term.

Sometimes I win with my choices.

Sometimes I lose.

Sometimes I do all the right things and still lose.

And sometimes I win by blind luck...

Seems doing right or doing wrong isn’t a factor on hopping around. But I admit it’s hard going through repeating failures. Lately I’ve been experiencing Jason through hard times. Perhaps one of these days it’ll roundabout to some good times again?
No. 1082317 ID: 11f77a
File 170689919804.png - (238.01KB , 550x500 , 123.png )

When I jump, I retain memories of the previous Jason, and gain new memories from the current one. Like our brains had fused together. Of course, some memories and emotions can be conflicting: such as the case of whether Len is dead or not. Or which girl I went out to the prom with (had I even went at all).

>It may be possible to achieve some sort of resonance, however. A harmony between the 'you's that becomes a self-reinforcing stability.
> So you're trying to reach a singularity by doing what you'd do across all of the timelines, you might be able to realign yourself with one reality?
Hmm. If Jason 1 had an epiphany and jumped to Jason 2, we’d have two Jasons with that epiphany, right? One learned it through realization—the other gets it instantly. I guess if I jumped an infinite amount of times we’d all be on the same page.

If I come up with a solution to get out of a bad corner--maybe the idea-hopping can help those who haven’t made the conclusion yet. Albeit a slow process.

There’s no way of knowing if THIS consciousness is the only one that can travel. Or if it’s spreading out. So far none of the Jasons I’ve jumped to had already experienced this, aside when I go back to a previous one.
No. 1082318 ID: 11f77a
File 170689922616.png - (249.72KB , 550x500 , 124.png )

One thing I cannot predict: jumping to a parallel timeline is out of my control; I have no idea how it’s triggered or when it’ll happen. Nor will I know which life I’ll end up with.

Actually... there is one, albeit traumatic, method.

Upon my death, I still jump to another adjacent timeline.

Would I even ‘Groundhog Day’ my way out of this?

In-before killing myself until I end with a Jason who happened to have studied temporal physics or some shit.
No. 1082319 ID: 11f77a
File 170689927422.png - (291.99KB , 550x500 , 125.png )

Wait a second...

There seems to be a common theme when the jumps happen in droves. There could be somewhat of an anchor after all--just not one that keeps me in a single place, per se.

I’ve been talking to my mother, a lot of Jasons have kept mom on the phone one way or another. But it’s something I noticed that we all share in this moment.

It’s like my prom night, too. A lot centered around that night in particular.

These other parallel times swing back and forth, and wobble like a pendulum. The anchor is on the end of one string and I’m swinging as the ball at the other end... maybe?

Sounds like a theory so far...
No. 1082320 ID: 32c482

Oh so that means there aren't limitless possibilities in the jumps, or else you'd be strewn about an infinite number of yourself. There's only a set number of things that can happen because there are set "events" tethering you to finality. Like first it was Len's Wallet being in your room, then it was Prom night, and then it was your call with mom! Maybe by finding what's the same between jumps, you can realign yourself!

That must mean there's a sort of "win condition" for the jumps. Although it's unclear what it is, the best thing you can do is survive to give more perspectives on the singularity?
No. 1082325 ID: 936bd9

Oh. Pretty sure this is immortality of the quantum type...-ish. With a little bit of the Quantum Leap show. Gist is that as you go along, less Jasons will be alive. However regardless of the odds, Jasons will stay alive. Few might even live forever-and-a-half. Funny thing about the pendulum bit though is that it may be a Foucault Pendulum of sorts. Which steadily moves due to gravitational forces. Except it substitutes gravity with, well, we have no idea for now. Got a possibility though. "Ever since Len's death." Was there jumping prior to the death? Either way the question is, what do you want to get out of this? Perhaps your circumstances define you a little though what defines even more is how you respond. One of two things is the case. Either there is a purpose to these jumps or there is no purpose in which case you create the purpose. Want escape? Study temporal mechanics and that knowledge should stay with the you-that-jumps. Want to do good? Since dying is no issue use the life you inhabit positively even in the face of death. Perhaps even nihilistic hedonism is a way to go. Or go meta and make your purpose finding your purpose. Since you cannot "die" you can figure it out at your own pace.
No. 1082364 ID: 273c18

Alright, find an alternate timeline where you were talking to someone who knows him. Or talking to him. Find out some personal details which you can use to make him calm down. Maybe you could even find a way to help him, without having to give him money?
No. 1082433 ID: 15a025

It sounds like Jason can't travel backwards or forwards in time.

Your mom might be your anchor so to speak, for now anyway. Keep focusing on her for now and give her a hug.
No. 1082436 ID: 273c18

Doesn't matter? He gains knowledge of the alternate past when he swaps to another timeline. So the useful information could be in the past, or it could even be in the recent present.
Hell, we could even try making our assailant the anchor.
No. 1082437 ID: eb0a9c

First theory that comes to mind is each death acting as the anchor for a limited number of iterations. Whatever is causing your psychic jumps is damaged so quickly that you usually don't remember the actual death in your subconscious - though the shotgun would be fast enough. The more times you die or force a jump, the more cohesive - but more limited - your jumps are for a time.
No. 1083763 ID: 2eb1da
File 170840775279.png - (231.28KB , 550x500 , 126.png )

>Was there jumping prior to [Len’s death]?
Not that I recall. The split with Len’s death was the first I was disoriented and confused. Eventually, things had returned to normal and I thought it was just a mental episode--or migraine.

>Find an alternate timeline where you were talking to someone who knows [Garvey].
Garvey was always a wild card. According to my other selves I remember him most as a junkie through-and-through and part of the bad group that included Maeve. In some parallels he arrives a minute later which grants me a moment to prepare (thanks to the experience of other selves), or a minute earlier which would be tough luck.

>We could try making our assailant the anchor.
Whatever catalyst is making these jumps, it happens on a whim. I don’t know how I can influence it--if at all. Only dying can force me out of one parallel, but still ‘orbit’ around an anchor.

>First theory [...] is each death acting as the anchor
Perhaps. The death of Len is significant enough--and then there’s my recent death(s) as... ‘alternate routes’ rather than the main anchor. But that doesn’t explain prom night.

>Keep focusing on [mom] for now and give her a hug.
I can see her push through the crowd; she looks for me. Our eyes lock and she runs towards me. I feel exhausted but close the gap. And she embraces me as a mother would find her long lost child.

Jase: Mom...

Mom: I’m here, honey! Oh God...

Jase: I want to go home.

Mom: You will. We’ve all been worried sick.

Mom: I promise to do right by you!

Jase: No... it wasn’t you...
No. 1083764 ID: 2eb1da
File 170840777881.png - (317.10KB , 550x500 , 127.png )

Jase: Yeah. That sounds about right. I’ll talk to you later then.

I hang up. I reorient myself and remember which memories are current. It feels bittersweet--to know there are Jasons worse off than me.

Ells: Who was that, Jase?

Jase: Huh? Oh, it was just mom! She was asking if there’s anything she can pick up at the grocers. I could only think of soda.

Ells: Oh! Tell her I said hi then!

Jase: Well, I already hanged up. I’ll tell her in person though.

It’s clear I’m a little off this afternoon.

Ells: Are you alright?

Jase: I need a moment to sit down.

Ells: Migraines again?

Jase: Yeah. Could be.
No. 1083765 ID: 2eb1da
File 170840779872.png - (282.21KB , 550x500 , 128.png )

>Either there is a purpose to these jumps or no purpose (in which you create one).
>Immortality of the quantum type [...] Gist is that as you go along, [fewer] Jasons will be alive.
Who knows how finite these Jasons really are? If every decision splits a path, then it would seem near-infinite with the slight choices I make every day.

Right now... everything seems fine. Ells and I are hanging outside a water-ice shop in the sun. Something nags me to check the weather in West Syorn where the mall was. Turns out it’s raining pretty harshly there.

A purpose though...

I guess the best thing to do is to keep my head on and figure out how to help any who are in peril, and maintain those who are living happy lives. It’s the least I can do for now.

Those Jasons are still out there. Somewhere. Continuing where I left.

I fear that as time rolls on, remembering the conflicting lives and deaths of Jasons will put my mental state under a lot of stress and throw me right into an insane asylum.

I ought to enjoy my water-ice before it melts. Everything feels stable--

...for now.
No. 1083767 ID: 2eb1da
File 170840786928.png - (149.21KB , 550x500 , 129.png )

--and it cuts off there. That’s all Osman ever wrote.

The bus has pulled up to the stop closest to Silenus. Seems Lars (the security guard) was notified about my visit; he lets me in without a problem.

I meet Dolly by a side entrance instead of through the front lobby. I’m not quite ready to run into Nico again. She’s at least pleased to see me.

Dolly: Oh hey; you made it! That stack of paper looks much lighter, huh.

Marlene: Yep. Just dropping off the contenders for future Best Picture.

Dolly: Whatcha got?

“Got my money?” I jest as I reach into my backpack. She waves a-hundred between her fingers. As badly written these scripts go--I’m sure anyone here could vastly improve on them.

Marlene: Well... where to begin...

Marlene: On one end you have Mega Saturn, which is a surrealist sci-fi flick. The story seems very independent--the original author may want complete control, maybe even direct it.

Marlene: Then you have Countdown to Darkness which is campy action. If you keep the tone you’ll have to make it self-aware. It needs a huge makeover but at least it’s something.

Dolly: Uh-huh, uh-huh.

Marlene: And then there’s (sigh) Fat Vampire. I guess. Maybe not. I must’ve forgotten to throw this one away but you may as well take it. Silenus seems to be scrounging for any script that comes their way.
No. 1083768 ID: 2eb1da
File 170840790808.png - (154.52KB , 550x500 , 130.png )

Dolly: Not so easy sifting them out, huh?

Marlene: Girl, I’ve done some plenty sifting when I worked here!

Dolly: Is that all?

It takes me a moment to bring up Kaleidoscope; I don’t know why I’m anxious to share it. Perhaps I dread handing it over and never seeing it again.

Marlene: Well--uh, there’s this one unfinished script. I tried calling the author but long story short; he’s dead. I came in contact with his son, though.

Marlene: Jason in the Kaleidoscope. A boy is stuck switching back and forth on multiple timelines. But that’s an extreme generalization. It may be a confusing start but I’ve found it very captivating. It’s not perfect but--

Marlene: it could be what Silenus is looking for, ya know. You should definitely read it when you have the time.

Dolly: I’ll take your word for it!

She browses through some pages and quickly stacks them all up. I now have a hundred dollars in my hands.

Dolly: Well thanks again! With the Marlene stamp of approval they’re on their way to the big screen!

Marlene: Yeah, no problem. It gave me something to do.

Dolly: It’s getting a bit late in the day. I won’t waste any more of your time! I’ll catch ya later.

Something doesn’t settle right with me as she plainly turns to enter the building. She’s smiley and all and oblivious to what she has in her arms--it aint her fault but I’m compelled to stop her.

Marlene: Waaait--!
No. 1083769 ID: 2eb1da
File 170840793517.png - (131.69KB , 550x500 , 131.png )

She stops in her tracks.

Marlene: It’s...

Marlene: Ugh.

Marlene: Have you ever... read something so... completely different that you don’t want it in the wrong hands?

Dolly: Psh, oh?

Marlene: No offense to you or the writers in there! But this is something I’ve been waiting to fall in my lap.

Dolly: Weeeell. I’m constantly churning out one script and onwards to the next. I usually forget everything I’ve read by the next day. And I know I’ve read some good ones. But I get what you mean.

Marlene: Yeah, it’s been an unproductive year for me--and maybe that script could help me back on my feet. A little inspiration here and there to get rolling.

Dolly: The Saturn one?

Marlene: No, no, the kaleidoscope one.

Dolly: Don’t you worry; I’ll keep it close.

Marlene: Well maybe I can finish it. Sure, I can ghostwrite it with help from the author’s son--then resubmit to the studio but it would be much easier to maybeee stay in touch with this place.

Dolly: I dunno--you think Mr. Booth has finally forgiven you for storming out? Probably best to give it another month.

Marlene: Well... I haven’t told anyone this but Nico maaaay have asked me if I wanted to come back.

Dolly: Oh really? Huh. That’s news to me!

Dolly: Still. I thought you didn’t like working here. I do understand that freelancing is harsh and takes a while to stick. But I’ve always admired your resilience!

Marlene: I mean--that part is complicated.

Marlene: No matter what, I don’t want that script to simply disappear in there. I may have been a secretary but I know it’ll end in the back of a filing cabinet.

She shrugs.

Dolly: Look, if you think you got something--more power to you. Who knows when I’ll get around to presenting the story? Maybe you can propose it to Nico yourself? He ought to still be in his office.
To Recap...
• I abruptly quit my secretary job at Silenus several months ago. But I made a scene on my way out.
• Since then, I’ve had a serious writer’s block. Go figure.
• Much to my surprise--Nico had recently offered my job back. Although I was still on the fence about it.
• Yet for reasons I cannot explain... I accidentally kissed Nico. I really don’t know what came over me. I blame the effects of the dream-world--but I hurried on out.

No. 1083770 ID: eb0a9c

Hm. As a movie, this needs some editing.
What you have here is a base.
The author is dead and his next-of-kin has given you full permission to do whatever the hell you want to it, as long as he's properly compensated.
You know something is happening to you, but you're having a hard time comprehending it. It's obvious; combine the two concepts. Write Jason's story into a greater mystery.
The journey splits apart.
Some Jasons stay ignorant. Some Jasons try to game the system. Some Jasons figure out the truth. Some Jasons completely forget.
Connect the unknowns with your cybernetic description of the unknown, to give the audience a nugget to chew where you have none.

You can do this, Marlene.
No. 1083773 ID: 273c18

I mean, the plot is similar to Everything Everywhere All At Once, so we could swing it in the direction of Jason finding out that other people have this ability and he gets training to control it, which lets him fight some kind of existential threat.
No. 1083807 ID: 8f9bc4

I dunno... Nico. That was just so... weird. I thought you left the studio originally because you were falling prey to his devilish allure, but this is in fact a new thing? Or is it just that all this time, your writer's block was caused by your attraction to him left unsatisfied? But you can't leave this script. It's too important. You're coming up with so many ways to realize it as a great film!

You could at least talk to Nico I guess. And maybe... work up the courage to tell him you already have a boyfriend? Would that even matter to him? Would it make it even harder to resist? Are you even attracted to Nico or is this a dream?
No. 1084356 ID: 2eb1da
File 170873949065.png - (160.04KB , 550x500 , 132.png )

>I mean, the plot is similar to Everything Everywhere All At Once
>As a movie, this needs some editing. What you have here is a base.
It does seem like Jason’s story could go in any direction from here, even genre. But I always figured it’d stick to drama. Dunno about the absurdist comedy aspect as it’s been quite a psychological ride for a kid. But anything can happen with rewrites.

>You could at least talk to Nico I guess.
Yeah... I could.

Marlene: Ya know what? Maybe I will.

Marlene: Excuse me a moment.

I fish for the script, tug it from her hands and start my way to Nico’s floor.

Dolly: Oh! Uh, alright! Good luck and all.

>I thought you left because you were falling prey to his devilish allure. [...] Are you even attracted to Nico or is this a dream?
It’s difficult to explain what I feel towards Nico.

He was my boss, and I’ve seen him on his best and worse days. I’ve never been on his bad side luckily, but there have been employees who left his office crying their eyes out. And I admit he has an aura around him that can be both sexually charged yet still intimidating when he looks over your shoulder as you’re working. I admit as much as anyone that he’s quite a hunk to fantasize.

Now... I never ever considered cheating on my boyfriend. No way. No how. I love Seb to death; he’s such a sweet boy.

I need to figure out a way to set boundaries. Perhaps I can explain why I accidentally kissed him. What could I say? I was drunk? Missed kissing his cheek?
No. 1084357 ID: 2eb1da
File 170873958347.png - (121.51KB , 550x500 , 133.png )

I step up to his office door. I can see his silhouette swiveling in his chair. I snort out my nostrils. I haven't made a pitch in forever. I've written one episode for a television series--which was cancelled before mine aired.

You can do this, Marlene.



What the fuck do I say?
• Am I gonna make some demands?
• Would I put on a fake smile and act like nothing happened?
• I should obviously set things straight that I’m taken.
• Oh right, I should try to pitch this script too. But how?
• Do I try to remain somewhat independent if it works?
• What exactly did he want me back for? He clearly sees something in me.
No. 1084364 ID: f7d131

Greet him with a droopy tone, somewhat serious but not too much.

Tell him you came to present the expanded script, how you got ahold ofit, and how you hope to get it further reviewed.

After that, talle about what happenef, how you used to have a thing for Nico, but now have a boyfriend, and feel embarassed about the situation.

Tell him you don't hate him for what happened, but you are not looking to be un a relationship with him, and for that matter, that you are still unsure about whether you will stay in contact after handing the script, given that you still wish to live an independent life. It all depends on how the script is recieved, sadly.
No. 1084366 ID: eb0a9c

Your main selling point is that this script is one of the few that you truly believe could be forged into a blockbuster that could sell for hundreds of millions - and since the original author is dead, they're free to unleash their creative licenses over it, and won't need to worry about empowering a new threat to the company, as long as they pay royalties to the author's family.
You just don't want it to be burned up or thrown in a filing cabinet. Beyond that, it's the studio's decision on where they want to take it.
No. 1084377 ID: 8f9bc4


Don't sell it too hard. You don't want someone else swooping in with dollar signs in their eyes taking you out of the picture so they can claim it for their own. Just tell him you found a decent script, and you feel like you could do a good job finishing it, might help you break out of the creative rut you've been in. Then kiss hi tell him about how sweet Seb is, and you're so lucky to have him, and apologize for giving Nico the wrong idea back there. (It's not entirely your fault, but he seems the type to appreciate an apology, more than an accusation.)
No. 1084469 ID: 15a025

Try and stick with the independent route. Pitch it and explain the situation with the author. You'd like to ghost write and finish it up. Then collaborate with Silenus to get it on the big screen.
No. 1085007 ID: 2eb1da
File 170933120392.png - (189.99KB , 550x500 , 134.png )

>After [this], talk about how you used to have a thing for Nico, but now have a boyfriend, and feel embarrassed about the situation.
>and you're so lucky to have him, and apologize for giving Nico the wrong idea back there.
If everything goes as planned--I’ll definitely explain my behavior the other day, and that I’m taken and not looking. I tap the door with a knuckle. Mr. Booth bellows the invitation to come inside. I let out a huff to relax my muscles--and walk in.

Marlene: Mr. Booth.

Nico: Oh, you’re back! And how are you, Ms. Collins~?

>Try and stick with the independent route.
>Greet him with a droopy tone, somewhat serious but not too much.
Marlene: Been better. I might even say I’m in a good mood today. But the day can go differently, depending.

Nico: Depending...?

Marlene: Because I’m still carefully considering whether I should come back to work.

Straight to the point. His body gradually shifts from a hunch over his desk to write documents--to easing back against his chair.

Nico: Ah. And have you made your decision?

Nico: If it was a no, you’re very polite to walk in to tell me yourself.

I... still don’t have an absolute answer for him. And I can’t afford to lose momentum. Perhaps we can make a detour for now. When words are lacking, there are actions. I slap the script down on the edge of his desk as my answer.

Nico: Oh-ho? What’s this?

Marlene: That is a script.

Nico: I see. And you want to... pitch another one of your pilots?

Marlene: No. Not like that. And it’s not my script either. It’s by a man named Osman Niero; he was a teacher in Michigan who loved to write in his downtime. Never published anything though; which is unfortunate because he passed away some years ago. Instead his son submitted his stories to studios around the country but with zero responses.

Nico: Were they all terrible?

Marlene: Sir, if I hadn’t read this script all day then I probably wouldn’t have bothered to return here ever again.
No. 1085008 ID: 2eb1da
File 170933130328.png - (136.66KB , 550x500 , 135.png )

He lets out an amused snort. He at least reads the title page with a flair of playful sarcasm.

Nico: So it’s got your seal of approval, huh? Sounds pretty special if the one-and-only Marlene is impressed by it. What’s it about?

Marlene: It’s about a boy growing up, and by some odd happenstance he experiences parallel lives of himself. Very... psychological but a sci-fi coming-of-age more or less.

Nico: So what do you want me to do about it? Are you passing it on for a friend because you happen to know the producer?

Marlene: Of course not. Even if that was the reason, it’s still unfinished.

He chuckles but was caught off-guard.

Nico: Marley, you’re sure... full of twists and turns. I’m beginning to lose you here. What’s all this really about?

I take a slow breath.

Marlene: You said that you needed a staff you can count on; ‘a strong team through the worst times’ verbatim. For offering to me, I figure I hold at least some worth in your eyes for the consideration.

Marlene: I’m still conflicted whether that means going back to being a secretary--but a ‘strong secretary’ position isn’t an enticing opportunity. I’ll have a job again, sure, but there’s very little room for freedom there.

Marlene: I’ve always dreamed to work behind the scenes--just not the sorting-documents kind. Even when I left I’ve been having a creative rut for months.

Marlene: --up until I came across this story, and I’m struck with the inspiration to finish it. I can’t quite explain. Perhaps it can turn things around for me. It’s a spark but I think it’s enough to get the ball rolling.

Nico: What’s so special about this one?

Marlene: Because it’s different. It’s unlike any I’ve seen in a long while. It’s just missing a nugget of... something to exceed. I just have to explore it.
No. 1085012 ID: 2eb1da
File 170933214840.png - (165.68KB , 550x500 , 136.png )

>Your main selling point is that this script is one of the few that you truly believe could be forged into a blockbuster
Marlene: I know Silenus hasn’t been doing too hot and it needs something new to break the mold. This could be it.

Nico: Hmmgh.

Marlene: What movies has Silenus churned out lately? Superhero fatigue and hard sci-fi sequels that ran their course half a decade ago.

Nico: No studio is naïve, Marlene; believe it or not we can see the signs in the midst of post-production if a movie is going to flop. Like every film we publish--we will wring out as much revenue as we can. Or shelve it and make it a tax write-off.

Nico: Besides, as much as I’d love to take a gamble on any promising indie script--the shareholders know that people still go to the movies to see the same things over and over. And it’s always been that way.

Marlene: Maybe. But the budgets of those movies are horrendous; especially when you stack reshoots and the cost of advertising that nearly double the initial production.

Marlene: It may be an understatement but Kaleidoscope is a drama. No explosions. Minimal special effects. If we’re smart it could be feasible on a tight budget.

He sighs and rubs his temples.
No. 1085013 ID: 2eb1da
File 170933216145.png - (166.34KB , 550x500 , 137.png )

Nico: I feel we’re veering off a bit; let us rebound to that later. It sounds like you will only accept the job if we purchase the rights to the script.

Marlene: Well... putting it bluntly... yes. I suppose... that’s what this is. I guess it’s more like asking a favor. It’s what I want to do here, Mr. Booth. And I want to take part in finishing it.

Marlene: Something about this place keeps me on the fence. I still want my foot in the door... yet I feel reserved to stay independent.

Nico: Might I ask one question? Rhetorically maybe--but just a thought.

I nod.

Nico: What have you accomplished in the past half-year as a ‘freelancer’? Anything commissioned at all? Book? Script? Essay? A movie review perhaps?

I... dammit. Dammit. Dammit.

Nico: Hmm.

Nico: Marlene, in the time you worked here you were a pretty reliable gal. There’s still a certain... intuition I see in you.

Nico: But I won’t hire someone who is sometimes-with-us and sometimes-not purely on vibes.

Nico: Script aside, whether I even accept such a... favor, I still need a team that will go all-in. Which brings the most important question you must ask yourself at this very moment:

Nico: Do you want to work here or not?

He wears his famous hard stare. I’m trying to keep my cool but I’m tensing up inside on this decision.
No. 1085105 ID: 8f9bc4

He's feeling slighted because you rejected him earlier. Are you really up for this? The script is worth pursuing, but are you? What happens when you fail him, and you can't be the reliable worker he wants you to be? Are you going to say that you want something that you do not want? Maybe this was a bad idea.
No. 1085114 ID: dd3fe0

You love the work, ultimately. And structure helps. And the people are great And you can still be an asset and worth their time. The time you spent not working there helped give you perspective. So, yes, you are apprehensive, but that's not due to not wanting or needing or not being willing to go all-in, it's due to the magnitude of the change in front of you.
No. 1085120 ID: eb0a9c

"No, but I have to. Which means I will."
No. 1085168 ID: 15a025

Already pass the point of no return on this project. If you didn't want to see this through to the end, you wouldn't be in here. Jason's fate and Osman Niero's last chance to have his name out there is in your hands.

You want to work here, and you want to work on this movie.

The company has practically nothing to lose by picking up a simple smaller budget film.
No. 1085275 ID: debc82


From the sound of things, I'm not sure he WANTS us to work here, which is a pretty bad position to take.

Hardly inspiring, especially when he comes out with trite HR jargon like being "all-in."

But sure, fine, we took the initiative to walk in here, say this is the best damned script we've seen out of anything, and that we'll personally work to finish the damned thing for Silenus, but apparently that's not motivation enough.

We could always just take it somewhere that won't try to guilt us with emotional baggage.
No. 1085597 ID: 2eb1da
File 170976064830.png - (153.21KB , 550x500 , 138.png )

>”No, but I have to. Which means I will.”
>Are you really up for this? [...] Maybe this was a bad idea.
>If you didn’t want to see this through to the end, you wouldn’t be here.
>You are apprehensive, but that’s not due to [...] being unwilling to go all in, it’s due to the magnitude of change in front of you.
I reflect on Emmylou's words. I just need to pull on a tough face for a while. If only for a little while.

I take a single breath.

Marlene: Mr. Booth...

Marlene: I do want to work here, and I want the chance to work on this movie.

Marlene: Working alone has at least given me some perspective.

He gives a subtle nod.

Nico: Alright.

Nico: It’s good to hear you’re back in the game, Ms. Collins.

Nico: I’ll hold the script here. I’ll try to find time to read it over--and if it’s as captivating as you say then I may even pass it around my peers to have a few more views.

Nico: In the meantime, you should catch our current line-up of shows. You might even contribute to them in the future.

Nico: You can start after the weekend. I still have your information on file--that is--if you haven’t changed your address or means of contact.

Marlene: It’s still the same.

Nico: Then it’s all settled! That wasn’t so bad, was it? I’ll be sure that you can segue back into the rhythm of things here~

Nico: If there’s nothing else, I'll look forward to seeing you back in the office.
No. 1085599 ID: 2eb1da
File 170976092555.png - (130.06KB , 550x500 , 139.png )

I almost forget as I turn my back to leave; there’s still one thing left to make clear.

Marlene: If I could address one more thing--

Marlene: I want to say... what I did the other day was a bit of a mistake.

Nico: Hmm?

Marlene: The... dumb kiss I did. I’m a bit embarrassed of my reaction towards... your offer. You could probably figure I’ve been going through some things and my mind was not where it’s at.

Nico: Oh, that.

Marlene: I’m taken, Mr. Booth.

Marlene: I didn’t want to give you the wrong impression.

Marlene: I'm very embarrassed that I would do such a thing, but... I hope that doesn't make things awkward moving forward.

Nico: Hmmm.

Nico: I see.

Nico: Well it was unexpected for sure. I guess I misinterpreted your approach.

Nico: But I can easily forget it happened.

Marlene: Good. That’s all. Thank you for understanding.

Nico: Yes. I must wrap the day up now. Be seeing you.
No. 1085600 ID: 2eb1da
File 170976140288.png - (160.54KB , 550x500 , 140.png )

At this point there would be a cork popping from a champagne bottle. Instead I sufficed with the clack of a stout glass on mahogany veneer.

I’m at Hammered Horns with Maebe. The meeting with Nico happened so fast and full of adrenaline I don’t remember how I got here.

Maebe: Way to go, Mar-lene! Here’s to your last few days of freedom.

Maebe: This one’s on me. Do you like White Peak? It’s like drinking snow.

Marlene: You mean it’s water?

Maebe: Heh heh heh... naw I meant... the crisp. I dunno how to describe it.

Marlene: You seem unusually perky tonight~

Maebe: Aaaah I may have had two beers before you arrived. Alan just reopened the bar after a bad trivia night with bikers ended up trashing the place. It looked like an apocalypse rushed by. Anyway, that means all the beer is new!

Maebe: But whatcha gonna spend your hundred on, huh? And do you think your boss was bustin’ your balls back there?

Marlene: Maybe, I dunno. Sometimes he’s laid back but that may be to lure you in when he drops the hard questions; his demeanor completely changes.

Marlene: A bit unsettling but it’s all business I guess; I don’t think he has it out for me.

Maebe: “All-in Marley”

Maebe: Well here’s to hurdling over that jump. You got a script to write! Right?

Marlene: We’ll see after the weekend I suppose.

While the night is still young, I wonder how I’m going to spend it celebrating.
• gossip drunk
• 20 Bleater™ selfies drunk
• share secrets drunk
• bleat at sports drunk
• beer games drunk
• karaoke drunk
• trivia night drunk
• two girls jus’ kissing drunk

No. 1085603 ID: f3e128

the reasonable amount would be around bleat at sports or share secrets.

My brain went dead at two girls kissing so that one please
No. 1085605 ID: eb0a9c

Get the Two Girls Kissing to make you feel better about randomly kissing other men.
No. 1085607 ID: 4796dc

Truth or dare drunk!
Oh wait, thats not a choice

Beer games drunk then. We can get even more drunk! Have some fun, live a little lot!
No. 1085658 ID: 5ebd37

You haven't even finished dealing with the last kiss. Stick with secret swapping.
No. 1085671 ID: a09489

No. 1085675 ID: 273c18

Bleat at sports drunk.
No. 1085677 ID: a7a180

Share secrets drunk.
No. 1085712 ID: 8f9bc4

Oh man the selfies is tempting...
No. 1085923 ID: dd3fe0

share secrets drunk
No. 1085931 ID: 7c55ad

I'll change vote to sharing secrets drunk since playing games isn't getting a lot of votes. If we share secrets drunk, talk about our dream experiences, would be fun to hear her opinion while she's drunk. We told her before, but not the whole thing.

talk about the guy you see in your dreams, and also how you sleptwalk, even naked outside that one time
No. 1085941 ID: 7c151e

seconding this one.
No. 1085957 ID: 15a025

Share secrets!
No. 1086044 ID: 2eb1da
File 171010470615.png - (178.24KB , 550x500 , 141.png )

>Bleat at sports drunk
I’m not much of a sports enthusiast but the Hartwood Lumberjacks, my hometown varsity football team, are on. I’m one full pint into my drinking binge--and I don’t drink often, so I’ve yet to build a tolerance for alcohol in my veins.
Still, it lets me feel loose and open to express myself.

Marlene: Fuckin’ horseshit!

Marlene: Both teams got worse since I left high school.

Maebe: I actually gave one of those guys a tattoo on his back thigh--right under his ass. I think it was the name of his girlfriend.

Marlene: ‘They still together?

Maebe: Fuck if I know; I don’t keep tabs on customers.

Maebe: You ever wanted a tattoo?

Marlene: Maybe. I wouldn’t know where to put it.

Maebe: Trust me. You’ll figure it out soooon enough.

She smirks and clinks her glass to mine.

Marlene: I aint getting a tattoo tonight.

Maebe: Fine, fine.

Marlene: And what the hell was that pass? He’s over there in No Man’s Land!

Maebe: Do you keep tabs on high school buds?

Marlene: Mmmmm—yeah. I only had two friends, to be honest. Their names are Emmylou and Lori--sisters. We were neighbors but I see them enough to know what’s been happenin’ in their lives.

Marlene: Oh wait. There’s an ex. We sorta talk. Last time I surfed Bleater™ he got married. I think he’s gonna have twins.

Maebe: Cool, cool. Good for him. Here, lemee flag Alan down for another beer.
No. 1086045 ID: 2eb1da
File 171010473686.png - (171.85KB , 550x500 , 142.png )

>Share secrets!
Maebe: No waaay... you sleepwalk?

Marlene: Used to. Leas ss t in high school. Bit in co llege. I think it was depre s sion.

Marlene: -snuck- But I’m doin’ it again.

Maebe: Like. What d o you dooo? Eat from the fridge? Pee yours elf? Heh heh.

Marlene: Jus t. End up somewhere--I end up some w here in the apar t ment. On the floor. Or clozet.

Marlene: Oh! Oh! Ooh man... I ack-shully end e d up naked o uts ide.

Maebe: Shit! Naw-uuuh.

Marlene: Oh y ea h. In the buf f. Happened thi i i iis mor n ing.

Maebe: Nuh-uuuuuuh. Really? Nauuuh.

Marlene: Ido n’t thin kany one saw me...

Marlene: Sebbs dared me to go o u t naked on ce when we moved in. To grab a le af from atree. That was a rush to my p r i vates~ Eh-heh heh heh~

Marlene: S a a t on his dick right aft er huehuehue
No. 1086046 ID: 2eb1da
File 171010479963.png - (167.71KB , 550x500 , 143.png )

Marlene: Oh! So the d ream s I’ve had. The o rang e dreams. I told you this, right? I als o see a man.

Maebe: Is he h o t?

Marlene: I... dunno! Haha! He’s cute I gues s.

Maebe: Not your boyfrien d? What does he do, chase you wit h a knife? Sta nd l ike a creepy sexper vert?

Marlene: Naw, jus t a guy I talk to in my dreams. I think we just f l o a t around. Talk about sstuff.

Marlene: Like... like...

Marlene: Is this even real? Is this mun dane world f a ke?

Maebe: That’s some deep shit.

Marlene: Right. Y eah.

Marlene: We’re both nekkid too. And float a ro und in oran ge. And we’re h o o ked up to...

Marlene: So m e thing--

Marlene: I’ll probably see him again to n ight. Lookin’ for wardt o it.

Marlene: I’ve ne v er felt so good.

Marlene: Man I s u u r e get naked. Like. A l o t.

Maebe: If-ff the creep y dream man was sudd en ly real like right inn fron t of you. Whaat w ould you even do?
No. 1086047 ID: a7a180

Give him my shirt so he wasn't naked!
No. 1086048 ID: eb0a9c

Repeatedly scream "CYBER" until you pass out.
No. 1086052 ID: dd3fe0

Talk to him. Try and get his phone number. Get him some drinks! Get him some clothes, hahaha!

We're friends, you know? Not with benefits! No sex! I'm taken! Can't have sex with anyone but the boyfriend.

Oh! I'd ask him about the other reality. See, when we talk, there's THREE reality layers. You know how the Matrix had two, but the other movie like The Matrix that no one watched, the one with the same idea that came out around the same time, uh, The Thirteenth Floor? It had THREE layers. So we're in a THREE layer reality. One is Here, Two is the floaty orange place, and Three is where we're SUUUUPER ugly cyborgs in a wasteland. Like. Really ugly. It'd be scary, but then you realize we're all just ugly! The fucking machines that made us cyborgs have no sense of style, ya know?
No. 1086053 ID: 8f9bc4

She's not the dream man. She can't be because she's too busy being Maebe! The only one right in front of you is Maebe, is she trying to tell you something hmmm? Or maybe it's the bartender. Hey, are you the guy of my dreams?
No. 1086054 ID: 7c55ad

You'd give him all the clothes off youur back so he wasn't naked anymore.

but also introduce him to Maebe and the band, you did talk to him about the band, and thought up lyrics with him critiquing it.
No. 1086055 ID: debc82


Ask him why he didn't ... call? Go to that one place?

Uhhhh ... there was something. We'd asked him to do a thing. And he didn't. Yet.

No. 1086100 ID: 0c0930

"'unno. See if the knows something weird that helps us wake up for good? Oh, also puunch him from chickening out on trying to open our eyes at the same time that one time!"
No. 1086115 ID: dd3fe0


Wait a second! I was assuming he was naked. But he'd be real here to, and HERE he'd have his normal clothes and stuff. So I don't need to give him my clothes. Cause he'd have some here! Cause you have a YOU in all the layers of reality, yea?
No. 1086401 ID: 2eb1da
File 171045714760.png - (124.95KB , 550x500 , 144.png )

Marlene: I uhh h h. He’d be all naked. Heh heh. And I’d give him my shi irt or paaants.

Marlene: Get his num ber. Not like--he’s not my boyfren I have one.

Marlene: Cute but. Iunno.

Marlene: I dun-no why he hasz’t called me. Or meet me somewher..

Marlene: I think he be avoiding me.

Marlene: In fakt, h e e ee... helps me write the son g.

Marlene: Your songe.

Maebe: He aint real Mar. It’s all a drreeam.

Marlene: You’re not re eal.

Maebe: I am real!

Marlene: Nunuhvis is real ly real. There’s three layer s of real-ty like the... Matrix.

Marlene: This one right now... uh...

Marlene: Then orange... world.

Marlene: And the night mare. The h a t e machines. It’s s so un bleeb—believe ably scary you wake up. We’re all ugly cyborgs. Hooked tooo machines.

Marlene: Only whence we open our eeyes. Do we see. He wouldn’t open ‘em. Chickening out--. Open our eyes.

Maebe reaches her hand out to me.

And flicks my snout.

Marlene: dOw!

Maebe: That real enough for ya?

Maebe: Make dat nonsense a sstory; I think we’be had enuff. I’m calling en Uber.
No. 1086402 ID: 2eb1da
File 171045717169.png - (173.92KB , 550x500 , 145.png )

My head feels heavy. What time is it? Oh right, I have a phone. I could look there. Where izzit. I’m sure Maebe knows where to drop me off. I feel everything spinning like an unending somersault.

Maebe: Uuugh I’m g o nn a barf.

Maebe: No wait. No I’m not.

Gotta give my eyes a rest.

Fuuuuck. I’m so tired.

Marlene: Where a r e we?

Maebe: We haven’t lef t yet. We’ll be there, don’t wo r ry.
No. 1086403 ID: 2eb1da
File 171045720049.png - (248.33KB , 550x500 , 146.png )

Carter: Marlene..?
No. 1086404 ID: 2eb1da
File 171045727116.png - (167.56KB , 550x500 , 147.png )

Maebe: Yo, wake up! You’re home!

Maebe: Come now, girl. Final s t retch to bed.

I hear a familiar voice.

Seb: Marley? That you? Are you girls alright?

Maebe: She’s just--we’re fine! We were celebr ating. She’s good! I’ve been watching her, don’t worry! Heh heh.

I’m trying to reorient myself.

Maebe: Co m e on, Mar; your guardian angel awaits.

Marlene: Carter?

Maebe: Car ter! Would you help her to the door?

Seb: Who? Who's Carter?

Maebe: Sorry, whatsst your name?

Seb: Heh. It’s Sebastian. You’re Mabel right?

Maebe: Sebbisseb? Naw, Maebeee. Sorry--I suck at names.

Marlene: Shit. Seb. Which way to the door again?
No. 1086416 ID: dd3fe0

Seb! Seb is great! You love Seb, can Seb tuck you into bed? Things are spinny! Soooooo drunk!
No. 1086423 ID: 8f9bc4

Don't forget to hydrate!

The door is uh... to your right.
No. 1086424 ID: dd3fe0

Right! Door to the right, thank Seb for being amazing, go inna house, drink LOTS of water, go pee, and THEN bed!
No. 1086428 ID: 7c55ad

literally crawl on top of Maebe to get out of the car, wish her good night

talk drunken silly nonsense to Seb, like tell him how adorable he is, Ask if he's interested in doing more risky naked dares with you in the future, and most importantly, give him a big ol' sloppy alcohol smelling kiss,

and oh yeah! tell him you're going to be working again! So you both HAVE to celebrate with him in some way.
No. 1086553 ID: 15a025

Try not to trip on your way out of the cab. Then fail and trip into Seb's arms.
No. 1086609 ID: debc82


Shhhhh nooooo, dreamtime is now. Maebe no, we gotta talk to Carter
No. 1086610 ID: a3b6f7

You should go to the kitchen. You have to *hic* you have to check there's enough food tomorrow.

Maybe... *hic* *snickers a little* maybe you should eat a can to see if it's good.
No. 1086685 ID: 2eb1da
File 171079749604.png - (179.71KB , 550x500 , 148.png )

Maebe’s fat ass aint movin’ to let me through. Moooove.

Okay. She moved now. I manage to walk a few feet into Seb’s arms. I try to kiss his lips but I think I missed. Yeah. I missed. And it was kind of a sucky kiss on the collar of his shirt. I end up nibbling on the fabric.

Maebe: You got h e r?

Seb: Yep! Yep she’s good. Thank you! Have a--have a nice night!

Marlene: Aaah, Seb~ You’re just so amaaazing. Heh heh.

Seb: You should... drink some water! Otherwise your head will implode tomorrow morning.

Marlene: I’m m plenty of water cuz I gotta rock a piss.

Seb: Well not out here! Hold it just a while longer.

Seb: Come on, let’s move our feet. There we go--
No. 1086686 ID: 2eb1da
File 171079753252.png - (182.69KB , 550x500 , 149.png )

Aaaaaah relief~

And then bed~

Seb: Lift your legs a bit. I’ll help get your pants off.

Marlene: Heeeh-heh-heh-heh. I’d feel w a y better naked right a bou t now.

The sound of ocean waves.

Seb: You’ve been out pretty late.

Marlene: I’m sorry, Seb.

Seb: I aint mad or anythin’. Did you have a good time?

Marlene: Uh-huh...

Marlene: Sorr y, though.

Seb: I know~

The sound of clouds soaring.

Pants come off. Woosh! Just my shirt and undies.

Seb: It’s one-in-the-morning. I was beginning to worry.

Marlene: Celebrate-ing. We celebrate...

Marlene: Awe ma a a an.

Marlene: F u u uc k me. Eh-heh-heh-heh...hehehehe.

Seb: Uuuuh-huh~ I don’t think either of us has the stamina tonight.

Marlene: Do me uh d a r e Seeeeb.

Seb: Just rest for now~

Marlene: Mm I dare you to—

Marlene: Open your e y e s.
No. 1086687 ID: 2eb1da
File 171079757180.png - (204.17KB , 550x500 , 150.png )

The sound of sun rays.

Marlene: Open ‘em

Seb: Just sleep hon~ Time to close them.

The sound of...
No. 1086688 ID: 2eb1da
File 171079776515.png - (195.19KB , 550x500 , 151.png )


No. 1086692 ID: 2eb1da

Chapter 4: https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/1086689.html

Delete post []
Report post