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File 167927300205.png - (158.77KB , 550x500 , 000.png )
1059064 No. 1059064 ID: 11f77a

NSFW for nudity and possible casual lewds
Chapter 1: https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/823974.html
Chapter 3: https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/1068906.html

“Happy for once.”
Expand all images
No. 1059065 ID: 11f77a
File 167927310041.png - (155.60KB , 550x500 , 001.png )

It feels good to be back. It feels good to wade in this warm elysian pond. The heavy air tickles my body and I can’t help but smile. I’m happy.

I sense another. Not sense... I see him. Or know he’s there. I know it’s a he. Like proprioception, I know they’re there. An extension of me. Or maybe part of him. When he softly speaks it’s like he’s next to me. Distant? Close? So far away but so easy to reach. I can imagine him across the room. In another house. In another life. In another time. No borders. Nothing between.

???: This isn’t a dream, is it?

???: I know you’re there. I th-think.

???: Are you going to hurt me?

???: I don’t want to be alone.
No. 1059066 ID: e51896

swim closer
No. 1059068 ID: a7a180

Not on purpose, but watch the horns buddy.
No. 1059071 ID: e5709d

"This place has a price. I hope you're ready to pay it."
Keep your distance but swim together. Concentrate. You're here for data. Your magnum opus begins here.
No. 1059079 ID: 273c18

"I am real. But this isn't. Have you seen the end of the cable?"
No. 1059081 ID: dee951

"Hey. Our perceptions are being fucked with. You wanna get out of here and go find The Real? Even if it sucks? I'll join you, we can do it together."
No. 1059122 ID: 5d04f4

"What is your name?"
No. 1059146 ID: 1371b2

Why do we not trust this dream again? I thought it was mostly good until the flip to horror at the end?
No. 1059148 ID: dee951


Because there's a flip to horror at the end! Such a thing isn't a clue that, yaknow, the setup is benign. Also the setup itself is overly surreal and this is suspicious.
No. 1059157 ID: 273c18

Oh right, ask his name and contact information and/or general location, and exchange a passcode between you. That way, if this place is what we think it is, you can find him in the waking world and use the passcode to confirm that you really spoke to him in the "dream".
No. 1059177 ID: 11f77a
File 167937056641.png - (173.02KB , 550x500 , 002.png )

>Concentrate. You’re here for data. Your magnum opus begins here.
I wasn’t expecting to be here again. But living in the same dream as last night is far more than coincidence. While I make myself aware and not immediately give in to pure bliss--uh--what am I collecting again? What data exactly?

>Swim closer
>Keep your distance but swim together
I’m still not sure how ‘distance’ works here. We’re always... present. Sometimes he’s next to me, sometimes not. If I try and stress the thought he could be far far away. But we talk and he’s with me again.

Marlene: No, I won’t hurt you. But watch the horns.

He chuckles.

???: Alright, what’s going on?

???: Did you bring me here?

???: I’m so tired...

Even I’m trying to maintain concentration. I reach and still can’t grab the tether from the back of my head. My hand just goes through it. I can’t see the end of it either.

Marlene: I am real though. But... I don’t think this is. Or it is but...

I trail off. What was I saying? Oh--

Marlene: Have you...

Marlene: ...seen the end of this tether?
No. 1059178 ID: 11f77a
File 167937066958.png - (154.86KB , 550x500 , 003.png )

He notices. His hand brushes his hair back to feel; his face lifts up and he smiles as if the make-believe sun beams down on his face. Cute guy. Young, maybe college age. He looks at his hand and expects something in it. Nothing. He speaks with a hum like me.

???: I’ve just noticed... It seems to go on forever. And ever. Where does it go?

Marlene: S’why I’m asking you, dummy~

We both giggle.

Marlene: What’s your name?

???: My name...?

He seems lost in thought--trying to remember. It’s sort of how I felt when I first came to this dream. I think I have a better hold on my memory this time around--but the notion to do nothing and relax is sometimes overpowering.

???: My name...

???: Name...

Marlene: I’m Marlene.

???: --Carter. I think it was Carter. No, it is. It is. I like your name. Marlene. Marlene. Carter... Marlene...

Marlene: Well Carter, you have a nice name too~

Marlene: Wanna get out of here and find the real world?

Carter: What? Why? What’s wrong with this place? Why would you want to leave?
No. 1059179 ID: a7a180

Well, the occasional flashes of our tender aren't so tender.
No. 1059181 ID: 273c18

>what's wrong with this place?
Well first off you're here without your consent, as far as you know.
Second off, there's nothing here. Well, he's here now, that's a start, but... there should be more.

Ask him to try to remember his life. What was his job? Where did he live?
Once he can think a bit more clearly, you can tell him that there is a way to wake up, but it leads to a terrifying situation. Yet after you did it, you didn't die, so it must not be life threatening.

Maybe you can both try waking up, but while also keeping calm? Maybe if you wake up without making too much of a fuss you can do it without attracting attention, and get a better look at what's going on. Or maybe Carter can be a distraction for you?
No. 1059186 ID: e5709d

"We cannot stay forever. Predators take time to hunt, but they can find us with patience. And then... the cyberware. Your brain burns. You don't even have nerves in that fatty tissue, but the hunter stitches the pain in."
No. 1059187 ID: dee951

This place is pleasant for sure. But being pleasant isn't everything. This place... it prevents knowledge. It hides the self. It removes destiny. It's not real enough!
No. 1059194 ID: bf353f

Maybe we won't be so sleepy in the real world! It'd be nice to think clearly and remember things, I think! Don't you think so too?
No. 1059355 ID: 11f77a
File 167959787364.png - (193.07KB , 550x500 , 004.png )

>Well the occasional flashes of our tender aren’t so tender.
Like before--it's different here. Like... I don’t care if I’m naked or if I see someone else naked in this dream. I may feel tickled to be exposed in front of this stranger but I don’t have any anxious thoughts. I don’t think we’re aroused either. He’s flaccid, far as I can tell. I feel something within me; a reminder that I’m safe with this guy. He may feel the same about me, I‘m unsure, unless I ask.

>Predators […] can find us with patience.
>This place... it prevents knowledge. It removes destiny.
Where are these ideas coming from? What are they even based on? It feels bad to defy this place still. There’s a conflict within me to hold onto my waking thoughts or fully immerse myself here.

Marlene: It just isn’t right. It’s pleasant for sure, but it’s not everything. It’s not real enough. Is it? We cannot stay here forever.

Carter: How do you know that? We’re barely even here and you... don’t like it?

Marlene: I do like it. It feels amazing. I don’t know why I’d ever leave but something’s left out.

Carter: I don’t know about you but I remember--

Carter: --unhappiness. Emptiness. It’s far away now. Don’t you feel that too? Something tells me you do. I don’t know how I know, but I just know. Like... my mind is having its deserved vacation. I needed a break. Heh~ A break from reality, even.

Marlene: It’s just... I was here once before. And I was alone. I didn’t explore much but--there doesn’t seem to be anything here but sunshine and good vibes.

Marlene: I feel there should be... more.

Carter: What more?

Marlene: I don’t know, really. I don’t know why I say any of this.

Marlene: I guess the real-me would be bothered. Even if I feel wonderful at this moment.
No. 1059356 ID: 11f77a
File 167959795929.png - (205.35KB , 550x500 , 005.png )

He’s close to me; I feel an aura that is greater when we’re together. Comfort. He notices that too.

Marlene: Where do you live, Carter?

Carter: Uhm...

Marlene: Or just a general place. No need for an address. Not that I’ll stalk you.

Carter: I think... it’s... wait. I was...

Marlene: Do you remember anything before coming here, at least? Do you have a job? Or something? If we’re both real do you think we could try to meet outside this dream? I think I know how to help you wake up. It’s hard to explain what could happen. But maybe we can help each other--

He presses his hands to his temples with an annoyed groan. He’s unable to focus.

Carter: Uugh jus-- It’s a chore to think right now. Where are you getting at?

Even I feel winded saying all of that at once. I suppose I get way more excited than I usually am. This place amplifies a lot of positive emotions.

Carter: Just... give me a minute to rest. This feels nice.
No. 1059360 ID: c28082


Go slower. Talk through it, a little at a time. Let the moment guide you, but not overwhelm.
No. 1059362 ID: 273c18

Huh, odd, where are his horns?
No. 1059369 ID: 1371b2

Maybe just relax and enjoy the vibes of this happy zone for now.
No. 1059370 ID: dee951

Go slower. One thought at a time. Focus on a way for you two to contact in the other world. name, phone number, address. Have him focus on the same. Repeat them to each other several times.

Afterwards: are your species known to each other? If not... then there's a third, unpleasant reality layer; maybe you two could try to meet there?
No. 1059371 ID: dee951


Also, are his horns only sometimes there or half-there or something? They look freaky, like they're camouflaged or phasing out like a 1990s special effect!
No. 1059507 ID: 15a025

Hold hands and speak slower.
No. 1059510 ID: f57349

Tell him about the coffee shop, including the name of the city. You could meet there.
No. 1059551 ID: 11f77a
File 167985476308.png - (159.46KB , 550x500 , 006.png )

>Maybe just relax and enjoy the vibes of this happy zone for now.
I exhale and let my body rest as we’re back-to-back. The ambience of this place is a slow hum. It resonates constantly at a steady tone--like oceanic waves. I imagine sitting on a hill in the spring as a kid back home, and nothing but endless sky above. Perhaps if I try hard enough I could relive those childhood moments again and again.

>Are his horns only sometimes there or half-there?
Marlene: Huh. Where are your horns?

Carter: My horns? Uh, on my head?

Marlene: I don’t see them.

Carter: I don’t see yours either. Where are yours?

Marlene: I have mine. Look! Can’t you feel them? I’m argali, dummy.

He faces me, and we make some kind of horn-rubbing exchange. I guessed as much that he’s nubian from his face and ears; I still manage to grasp something physical. His palms study the curvature of my horns as if he couldn’t believe it. In fact--I’m suddenly aware of my own as well. Throughout our lives we tend to ignore them in our peripheral--but they stick out in this moment.

Carter: Pretty cool~

Marlene: Strange how I couldn’t notice them before.

Marlene: Mmm~

Our heads gravitate and softly press. Bit of nuzzling here and there. His face is warm.
No. 1059552 ID: 11f77a
File 167985491573.png - (143.73KB , 550x500 , 007.png )

>Go slower. Talk through it, a little at a time.
Marlene: So you’re real...

Carter: I hope so. Heh.

Marlene: And I know I’m real.

Carter: Are you? Maybe you were made up in my head to suit a subconscious fantasy of mine.

Marlene: Or the other way around~ But if we’re both really sharing the same dream, where do you come from?

Carter: I’ve been trying since you asked. It’s on the tip of my tongue. But I always see a creek.

Marlene: I’m in the city. Not many creeks show up in Springford.

Carter: It’s...

Carter: I think it is Norris Creek.

Marlene: Norris? I may recognize that place. That’s actually quite a long drive from where I live now.

Carter: Huh. I find it funny that out of the entire universe we are only a day trip away.

Marlene: Well I don’t own a car; I’d tell ya exactly where we could meet.

Carter: Me neither, ha ha. Well--I own a car but I’m a little scared of driving. Or I would be scared in the real world.

Carter: I mean... not enough courage to hop on a highway. And go through a cramped city.

Marlene: Well if you ever stop by Springford for whatever reason I usually go to Brook’s Clove coffee shop.

Carter: Sure, sure...

A calm pause to sink in the environment.

Carter: S-So... where do you think we are? Is this some sort of heaven?
No. 1059561 ID: 248d15

"There's a third, unpleasant sci fi sort of place. I think that one might be a layer more real than this one. I don't know where our world with cars and coffeehouses is in the reality pyramid. This place is sorta heavenly though! If only it let you think clearly and be happy at the same time. A proper heaven would let you do that, don't you think?"
No. 1059586 ID: 273c18

Tell him you think you're in some kind of induced coma, via cybernetics, and you're being tended to by an alien.
No. 1059720 ID: 11f77a
File 168004788038.png - (185.57KB , 550x500 , 008.png )

Multiple explanations run through my brain, I choose one before my head is too cluttered and I would want to stop thinking altogether.

Marlene: I guess maybeeee...

Marlene: I was abducted by aliens, and I’m just in an induced coma through the works of cybernetics. Aaaaand when I wake up it’s only a fake world I live in.

Carter: That’s a hell of a synopsis. And where do I play in all of that?

Marlene: In a tube next to mine. Maybe you’re a figment of alien technology to keep me distracted. Ever seen The Matrix? I suppose like that.

Carter: Do you believe in aliens?

Marlene: Look, I’m sure there’s other life out there in the universe.

Marlene: But a moment like this changes a lot of perspective. And based on no other evidence whatsoever it’s got to be aliens. Not heaven or hell, or some higher being ascending us to a new plane, or maybe I entered a new frequency of thought; it’s aliens.

He chuckles and nods. He seems more accepting to this place than I am.

Carter: I think you’re just pulling my leg.

Marlene: ‘Got any better ideas~?

Carter: Not better, but it could all be just a simple dream.

Marlene: ‘Just’ a dream, huh?

Carter: Yeah. I’m sound asleep in my room waiting to wake up.

Carter: Who knows when one of us will wake up--and the other might no longer exist. Maybe you’re someone I’ve always fantasized to be with when I was lonely and depressed.

Carter: Any life you had could’ve been made up for this moment, using only what I know about coffee shops and town names. Or again it could all be you and the moment you wake up--I’ll die.

Marlene: ‘Just’ a dream...

Carter: I guess it’s because I‘d be at peace with that.
No. 1059727 ID: 273c18

Alright, it's time. Tell him to open his eyes. Then you will, hopefully using the distraction of him waking up to get a bit more time to yourself when you open yours.

If it doesn't work at all maybe you have to follow the tether a bit first?
No. 1059728 ID: dee951

Let's try and wake up together, come what may. And do our best to not panic and to react in a way we would be proud of, no matter what! Whether we are together or apart, in a heaven or a hell, dead or alive, let's face it!
No. 1059819 ID: f69af6

But... maybe there is another reason we are here.
Maybe there is a force that wants us to get closer together. To know each other, maybe meet in the waking world.

...Say, would you like to see each other once we are up?
No. 1060098 ID: 11f77a
File 168031286446.png - (182.71KB , 550x500 , 009.png )

I slowly spin my body and face him. My hands rest on his shoulders. The air around me is thick--between air and a warm bath. But I caress him and have his attention.

Marlene: Carter. I need you to try to wake up.

Carter: What? Now? Can’t we wait a little longer?

Marlene: I think it’s time we test something, that’s all. I need you to open your eyes for me.

Carter: My eyes? What do you think’s going to happen?

Marlene: I need to figure this place out. I won’t lie to you; the last time I opened my eyes I saw a nightmare. I saw something indescribable but it shook me awake.

Marlene: If this alien theory is right, maybe one of us can be a distraction. We need a good look. Just one good look. At least let me checkmark that possibility out.

Carter: No. Noooo. I don’t feel good about this plan, Marlene.

Marlene: I know, because I don’t either. My gut is in a knot as I think about it, but we have to try! Please promise me you’ll try this once!

Carter: Oooah. Maaan.

Marlene: Carter.

Marlene: I know you can do it with me. This fear we’re sharing is probably meant to deter us from finding out.

Marlene: I’m going to count to three, and then I’ll open them. I won’t blame you if you don’t follow.

He squeezes my hands anxiously.
No. 1060100 ID: 11f77a
File 168031293510.gif - (1.31MB , 550x500 , 010.gif )

Carter: Wait. Please! I don’t think we need to do this.

Marlene: One... two...

Carter: Marlene! Wait!

Marlene: Three--

Carter: I think the nightmare--!
No. 1060102 ID: 11f77a
File 168031310899.png - (124.97KB , 550x500 , 011.png )





I was prepared for the worst and in an instant I’m jolted awake; my heart was pounding after that one. Damn. Even when I try facing the reality of that place I still awoke the same way as one falls in a dream. Jesus.

What do I even make from all that?
No. 1060105 ID: e5709d

...You have a name and a location. It's time to find out what rabbit hole you've fallen into.

So, your alternate selves are cyborgs jacked up on drugs and VR. Not very original, won't make a great movie without billionaire-funding CGI.
No. 1060111 ID: dee951

Well. Okay. You saw him as some sort of heavily modified cyborg, perhaps. It looked scary, but looking scary is not the same as being evil. After all, there's a decent chance YOU look like that in that particular level of reality! Then, you aren't sure, but... you think he did what you said, he tried to wake up, succeeded, and suffered a traumatic fail-deadly for it. Then everything got scrambled, and you woke to this level of reality. He... might be dead, maybe. You should check his information, the obituaries, look him up, try and get ahold of him, keep an eye on that sort of thing for the next few days while in this universe.

Though, ugh.

These fucking things meddling with you. You wouldn't MIND being an ugly evil-looking cyborg and transitioning to various hallucinatory realities once in a while but this evidence of some external force lying to you and keeping information from you and removing your agency and knowledge about it is the really fucking horrible part.

Like, say it is a Matrix situation, and the vampire robots need your life Ki or processing power of your brain cause reality actually runs on different physics than you are used to or whatever. Sure, fine, you'd willingly go into a pod and hallucinate every night, you're no freedom fighting rebel type, and they have a right to exist too, as long as no one fucking HID THE TRUTH FROM YOU AND MESSED WITH YOUR MEMORIES. So you might be a hundreds year old cyborg kept alive with extremely aesthetically unpleasing technology, fine, whatever! But you have a right to know!
No. 1060118 ID: 273c18

Quickly write down the information from the dream before you forget it.
No. 1060127 ID: dee951


Agreed. Write it down, right NOW.

Dream/ESP/Meta-Reality Log:

Carter in Norris Creek. Nubian Male, roughly your age. Doesn't drive but owns a car. Shared pleasant orange dreamscape with you. Told him to go to Brook's Clove coffee shop. 'Awoke' from dream to see him as ugly cyborg. Possibly saw him injured in that reality layer? Then awoke normally. Research him & check obituaries & area church prayer requests!
No. 1060242 ID: b968fc


It could be latent memories being drawn upon by the brain to create the nightmare. The robotic monstrosity we saw, even if only for a moment, looked hauntingly similar to the mask that one jerk at the studio was wearing, didn't it?

Brains work in curious ways, like that; things you think about before falling asleep often appear in dreams. But Carter feels like an exception; we didn't recognize him as someone else, yet he seemed to be echoing all the things we'd first felt.

There's every likelihood he's merely a product of our subconscious, overlaid upon our desire to understand the dream (together with the nightmares) ... but there's also the possibility he was real.

And if so, that means this isn't JUST a dream anymore.

Do you remember what he said? Let's look into "Norris Creek," see if we can find a "Carter" in the phonebooks for there (or however people look for others). Doubtlessly there'll be a few -- it's not that uncommon a name -- but if anything, it'll confirm it wasn't stray knowledge our mind pulled together.

If so, however, we have to act on it. Wash up, give yourself a breather, then head to Brook's Clove. Put up a notice for "Carter from Norris Creek" to call you if he gets it.
No. 1060287 ID: 15a025

I get the feeling Carter was put there to try and keep you comfortable and asleep.
No. 1060370 ID: 11f77a
File 168048730732.png - (120.97KB , 550x500 , 012.png )

>So your alternate selves are cyborgs jacked up on drugs and VR.
>You saw him as some sort of heavily modified cyborg, perhaps.
>It could be latent memories being drawn upon by the brain to create the nightmare.
Blows my alien theory out of the fucking water. I dunno if I’m eager to accept that everything about my life could’ve been fabricated by a machine. There could be more at play than what I experienced firsthand. I mean, anything can happen in a dream without explanation but this kind of shit is not normal.

I figure Carter meant no harm, but I wonder if I looked just as frightening to him (if he opened his eyes like I asked). Every time I’ve opened mine I was kicked right out. Fuck, my hair is still on end. But my heart is resting now.

>Quickly write down the information from the dream before you forget it.
Shit. What time is it? No time to think of existential dread, that’s what. I appear to be on the couch--so with all my strength to get my legs working I pace over to my nightstand.

My phone says 5:23 in the morning. Seb’s alarm is about to ring.
No. 1060371 ID: 11f77a
File 168048734865.png - (156.21KB , 550x500 , 013.png )

I plop down on my side of the bed and I’m writing down as fast as I could even with barely any light through the curtains. I get all the essentials at least: Carter, Norris Creek, Nubian male--close to my age. Dreamland was orange and red, felt like heaven. Could be heaven. Could be fake. Robots dreaming. CGI budgets.

>Possibly saw [Carter] injured in that reality layer
>You should check his information, the obituaries; look him up […]
>There’s every likelihood he’s merely a product of our subconscious.
>You aren’t sure, but you think he did what you did […] suffered a traumatic fail-deadly for it.
>I get the feeling Carter was put there to try and keep you comfortable and asleep.
Shit, I really hope he’s okay. If it hasn’t killed me waking up then I could hope he’s awake right now in the real world. Like before I’m trying to remember every detail in the nightmare as well--and it’s just... well... I guess ‘cyborg’ is the best way to call it for now. It’s more difficult to think back on the end there. I also take in consideration how my dream may be subconsciously influenced; like the costume at Silenus. Forget it. I can’t ponder until after everything’s been recorded.

I make a note to research Carter’s name and location soon as I wash up--

Seb: H-Hon? You alright? What time is it--?

Seb: Wait, you’re not sleepwalkin’ are ya?
No. 1060374 ID: a7a180

Not sleepwalking, just bad dreams. Gonna go shower. You coming?
No. 1060379 ID: dee951

"Nah, I'm not sleepwalking. It's almost five-thirty, and I'm writing a dream log. Had an unsettling but not quite nightmarish dream. I'm fine."
No. 1060423 ID: e5709d

Don't speak until you've fully written the name and address down.

"I think I may be psychic. Let's see if this guy exists. If not, we can get lunch there."
No. 1060462 ID: b968fc


Sleepwriting, maybe, but no, fully lucid. Unfortunately.
No. 1060469 ID: 11f77a
File 168055751929.png - (168.10KB , 550x500 , 014.png )

Marlene: Nope. Not sleepwalking. Dream log. Just bad dreams. I’m fine. It’s almost five-thirty by-the-way.

Seb: Oh...

Seb: Ooookay...

Seb: Did you sleep at all?

Marlene: Yeah, yeah. Don’t mind me, just one of those mornings.

His alarm starts playing soft music; It’s one of those devices that fade in and light up slowly.

Marlene: Hey. You got a laptop you’re not using?

Seb: Didn’t you have a tablet, like, from college?

Marlene: Oh, right. Yeah. It’s probably on the top shelf of the closet. I’ll grab it later, then.

Seb: Sounds like you finally snagged somethin’! That’s good. Very good! Ya see, Marley? I knew it would come to you eventually.

I finish off the last motes of descriptions before details start fading from my head. He yawns and turns over onto his back. He really doesn’t want to get up by the groaning. In fact I just realize how tired I am for waking so goddamn early now that the adrenaline has passed.

Marlene: My eyes are crusty--I need to wash up. You coming?

Seb: uh—well... I wasn’t gonna. I did shower late last night and... I’m not dirty or anything. I’m just gonna shower after work instead. Save a bit for the heating bill.

Seb: Heh heh. Maybe the weekend though.

Seb: I’ll take the 10 minutes to rest a bit. My eyes need to adjust.
No. 1060470 ID: 11f77a
File 168055759878.png - (221.74KB , 550x500 , 015.png )

When I’m done scribbling I head to the bathroom.

I let the hot water pelt against my face as I delve into a meditative state of showerthoughts.

Sometimes... I wish I was back in the dream. It really makes me miss the tranquility and embracing warmth. And I’m so eager to know more--and see if Carter is okay.

>”I think I may be psychic. Let’s see if this guy exists.”
Do I even mention something like this to people out of the blue? Do I start talking about conspiracies that this place isn’t real? I’m gonna seem like a crazy person if I just drop it all on Seb. I should see where this goes first.


I guess it’ll be the same route as usual. Brooks seems to be the number one place to be today. Then check on Mneumonic Gaps. Would I even have a reason to go back to Silenus?
No. 1060475 ID: a7a180

Not until you finish reading those scripts.
No. 1060482 ID: a758c7

You’ll seem crazy, maybe, but Seb is your boyfriend and he cares for you and you trust him, right? Maybe just mention later tonight after you’ve investigated that some of the stuff in your nightmares seems a little too real. And hug him :3

Actually, hug him once you’re out of the shower, too; he’d probably appreciate it :)
No. 1060750 ID: 11f77a
File 168075535266.png - (216.55KB , 550x500 , 016.png )

>Maybe just mention later tonight after you’ve investigated [...]
Probably best. I need to see this through a bit further. I may actually have to hold onto some evidence before revealing this to anyone. I need a hold of Carter himself, if he even exists.

I exit the bathroom as dry as I could be. Seb is finally up at this point and trying to face the day. I make an effort to hug him in a weird position while still lying down.

Seb: Hnnnn--I don’t wanna do this shit every morning.

Marlene: Call in a sick day.

Seb: We’re short-staffed. I’m not gonna screw the other guys; they’re not that terrible. We could use the extra money anyway, I guess.

Seb: Are you thinking about the Silenus job?

>Not until you finish reading those scripts
Marlene: Er--yeah. I’m only reading a lot of terrible scripts for a friend today. She said she’d hand me money if I find anything good in that pile. Other than that I feel I have something to start with on my next epic novel that’s bound to sell millions.

Seb: Ah, good. We’ll then have enough to fix the air conditioner before summer hits.
No. 1060751 ID: 11f77a
File 168075544405.png - (143.48KB , 550x500 , 017.png )

I’ve plugged in the ol’ tablet to charge for an hour while I go about my usual morning drill. It won’t be long until the battery is out of the red. As soon as its 100% I’ll take it with me to Brook’s Clove for some atmosphere while I read through the stack of scripts.

Now there’s the matter of looking Carter up. Seb is just finding cereal to eat.

So... I just type in ‘Norris Creek pa Carter’ in the search engine. Some job profiles pop up. Garret Carter. Louis Carter. At a short glance most are middle-aged or clearly not matching the boy I saw in the dream.
I check the obituaries and local news around there. ‘Rudolph “Rudy” Carter, 85, formerly of Norris Creek, PA, died April 6th, 2017. Born to...’ Blah blah blah. There are other names that pop up in the townships around Norris Creek. ‘Woodlyne man involved in car accident killing 6.’ Someone named Chelsa Carter Lifton as a victim. ‘Police investigation closes portion of Carter St. at Crossroads.

I’m not finding anything instant, and if he had supposedly ‘died’ this morning then I guess I have to wait for the police to find him and write up a report for the news.

Brook’s Clove seems like a good bet if he decides to drive on over. I wonder if he’s feeling the same way.
No. 1060760 ID: e5709d

Even if he survived, he's going to be grieving over the mass deaths of his family. I don't think you should rope him in if he can tangentially suspect you of supernatural assassination / manslaughter.

Send an email to prove that you exist, that any future communication isn't just a con, but don't reply further.
"The orange dream has ended, and we exist. But I read the news, and what happened to you is far more important. I'll investigate on my own. Thank you for everything, Carter."
No. 1060761 ID: e5709d

Oh right

Start by searching for family members of Rudy, they're the most likely suspects for your Carter, or they'll realize you're looking for another Carter in the local area and might have gotten some misplaced mails on occasion. Use their emails.
No. 1060762 ID: 273c18

I don't think any of these could possibly be related.

Just go there and wait. You should probably tell your boyfriend what you're doing, just in case something happens.
No. 1060781 ID: dee951

You should maybe print out some posters. Are you a good portrait artist? Otherwise, you can come up with a list of public places to go ask people at; shops, gathering places, bars, churches, etc., and maybe a list of questions and reasonable excuses or stories to use for people who get suspicious.
No. 1060812 ID: b968fc


Any kind of social media profiles that match? It might be unlikely given his apparently insular nature, but then again, maybe our Carter is an avid user of the internet and hides behind a screen because it's easier than going out into the world.
No. 1060872 ID: dee951


That's a lot of random shit to assume, seeing as how we don't know his full name, his family, or anything.
No. 1060953 ID: 11f77a
File 168090745359.png - (169.11KB , 550x500 , 018.png )

>Send an email to prove that you exist
>Any kind of social media profiles that match?
I don’t know his email. And we didn’t share much information on addresses and phone numbers, or social media accounts. I look a little deeper in the one obituary for Rudolph Carter and neither he nor his surviving wife is Nubian. Although he could’ve always been adopted. I try facebook at least, but that only adds celebrities and business groups in the mix. Neither of us shared full names either so... I have a feeling our research ends here. For now.

>I don’t think any of these could possibly be related. Just go [to Brooks] and wait.
Probably a stretch, yeah. I don’t think I’ll be able to find him on the internet. Any further and I’ll be showing signs of obsession. So my best bet is to hang around and see if he happens to show up.

>Are you a good portrait artist?
I’m decent at drawing, but drawing from memory will be a tad difficult. I could just print out a big ‘CARTER’ sign but I think I’d look weird in public like that. Seb would probably wonder why I’d be printing a name in huge lettering.
I also don’t want a bunch of Carters showing up on my doorstep like an audition if I were to staple ads on bulletins and telephone poles.

He’s zipping up his jumpsuit now. I ought to tell him about my plans for the day.

Marlene: I’m gonna head over to Brook’s Clove and see if I can meet some friends. Emmylou works there, you remember her? From my high school?

Seb: Oh right. Yeah. I think I recognize her name. Cool, cool. Have a good time, then. I’m going to try to take it easy at work today. See if I get home a little earlier this time around.


Seb: See you later~

Marlene: Mmm-bye ♥ Roll in the big bucks.

Seb: I’ll give ya some big bucks alright.
No. 1060954 ID: 11f77a
File 168090747514.png - (146.56KB , 550x500 , 019.png )

I get dressed and pack up my shit: tablet, notebooks, and a heavy stack of scripts. At least I don’t feel useless at the moment--I feel something big about to change; it’s in the air and I’ve got to keep a hold on it. In fact for the first time in a long while I’m not thinking about my empty, depressing life. Well--not completely. But I have focus now.

I wonder what Carter’s doing at this moment. I wonder if he’s looking for me on the internet as I did. If no one else is experiencing dreams like this then there has to be a reason why I’ve been chosen to... uh... experience Elysium itself.

I swear if this is about angels and demons or some Adam-and-Eve bullshit I’m going to punch God myself.

Putting that aside, today I’m going to do some work dammit! I’m going to grind towards something. In fact, I’m kind of looking forward to the next dream because there’s so much I want to find out next. I should see if there are any books on that sort of thing later.
No. 1060955 ID: 11f77a
File 168090753108.png - (135.27KB , 550x500 , 020.png )

The walk to Brook’s feels shorter from all the thinking and daydreaming with music blasting in my ears.

I enter the shop; it seems to be lax with business today. All the college kids are probably taking their classes at this moment. I see Emmylou is at the counters taking care of orders. Bit of a line.
No. 1060958 ID: 273c18

Order a coffee or whatever, take a seat, laze about and look around occasionally to see if he shows up.
No. 1061003 ID: b968fc


Doubt Carter would have been able to ... I guess take the bus here, already, but let's give the place a quick look for any nubians. After that, get in line and maybe order a little something to go with your script-reading, and let Emmylou know you've got something to discuss with her once she gets a break.

Because maybe we can talk about the dream in the sense of it being inspiration for your (soon-to-be-famous) novel.
No. 1061024 ID: 15a025

No way he'd be here already. Grab a hot beverage and get cozy somewhere. Did you bring any of those scripts with you?
No. 1061187 ID: 11f77a
File 168126825790.png - (103.72KB , 550x500 , 021.png )

Coffee sounds nice right about now. I’ll order something simple. The line isn’t too bad, I guess. There’s a moment when Emm and I lock eyes and wave. But I make it there.

Emmylou: Good morning, Marley! You’re looking pretty stoked today.

Marlene: I do?

Emmylou: I dunno. Something about you--maybe you’re standing up straight for once!

Marlene: Har har. And you look worse than me for once.

Emmylou: Yeah, well, there was a rush before you came but it’s finally petering out. I could damn well use a break; a bagel even. Jason is twelve minutes late so he better get his ass here soon.

Marlene: I’m in no rush or anything. I’m gonna spend a good chunk of the morning here so... you can make my coffee whenever you’re about to tap out. I’d just like to talk to ya for a bit about something.

Emmylou: Sure thing, honey. I’ll be right with you--NEXT!
No. 1061188 ID: 11f77a
File 168126833246.png - (192.00KB , 550x500 , 022.png )

I find an appropriate seat: a place easy to spot if anyone’s looking for a particular polo sheep.

>No way he’d be here already
So I wait. I look around for any nubians; I slowly scan the place left and right. As I watch an occasional male come in it appears they don’t seem to be looking for anyone, neither do they feel nervous like waiting on a blind date. One guy just gets his coffee and leaves. Another is with their friends and they chat in the corner. Somehow it doesn’t strike me that they would be the Carter I'm looking for. This goes on for twenty minutes.

>Did you bring any of those scripts with you?
Course I did. I think it’s high time to start reading some; maybe a few loglines as I wait for Emm.

Let’s see... first script; can’t be as bad as Dolly says. You read a thousand scripts every day and they all would seem bland. I’m just a fresh new pair of eyes—yeah!

Fat Vampire. Horror Comedy. By Brawnsam Ivocery.
Gus Albermann, an overweight keyboard warrior, joins a secret vampiric cult and completes a ritual to become a vampire. Because vampires never age or change their form since initiation, he realizes he stays fat forever.

Lord help me.
No. 1061189 ID: e5709d

Okay, there's already the implication of fat-shaming in this script.
You know what? I don't think it can be truly called plagiarism if you can take a cover concept someone else thought up but write it in a completely different direction and theme.

Before you read the script, write up your own story about a vampire who can change some aspects of their initial body, mainly through vampire things like hunting and drinking the blood of those with varying bodies and minds, but ultimately accepts that fat is a part of their identity and learns to accept part of their body figure while putting in the work with their new opportunities as a vampire to change the highest-priority parts of themselves that they cannot bear to love, mirrored with an improvement or modification to their worst character flaws (while also developing a few extra character flaws they can live with - remember, vampire).

Then read through the script and slam anything that remotely resembles discrimination or peer pressure.
No. 1061190 ID: dee951

Oh... oh dear. Well, time to get through these scripts. Maybe you can do it as a sort of meditation? Read a page, look up for your Nubian friend, see if you can get in a flow state of letting the information get to you without hating it...

After all, get good enough at meditation and you can read the Eye of Argon, out loud, in front of your friends, WITH the non-canonical ending presumably written by someone else, without laughing at it's horribleness! See if you can practice that sort of zen!
No. 1061191 ID: 1371b2

…Nope. We don’t edit these things, we look through ALL of them and then start knocking these dumb ideas together.
Besides, I feel like the keyboard warrior needs someone for his personality to bounce off of to make his story not end in a angst-fest about locking himself into his worst self….
No. 1061208 ID: 708905

Hmm the base concept of a vampire getting horrified with the realisation that their stuck with their current body for eternity actually has some potential. That said it would probably be better explored with something other than being fat
No. 1061221 ID: a7a180

Make sure it's not the author's barely disguised fetish or one-note, then carry on.
No. 1061247 ID: 96112b

Hmm, the premise SOUNDS godawful, but execution is everything.

Playing up the duality of looking like a pudgy, non-threatening kid with being a blood-thirsting ghoul, adding supporting characters with similar problems from being unchangeable vampires, even making an allegory between personal insecurities and the concept of being a creature of the night.

Most writers would not be able to save this script.
Marlene Collins is NOT most writers.
No. 1061248 ID: 4bb4df


There is not enough ink in the WORLD to pen the notes that travesty needs. Let's maybe mark it down as "hopeless drivel" and see what's next in the pile.
No. 1061315 ID: 11f77a
File 168142305375.png - (149.10KB , 550x500 , 023.png )

>Make sure it’s not the author’s barely disguised fetish
>Okay, there’s already the implication of fat-shaming in this script
>It would probably be better explored with something other than being fat.
It’s practically the entire crutch they lean on. Like Mall Cop. Or Fat Bastard. Oh look, there’s a joke about blood sugar. The other vampires laugh at Gus and literally nickname him Blood Sugar. There are jokes about turning into a really fat bat and struggling to get anywhere. Excessive swearing that don’t improve the words being said. It’s apparently funny to watch animated bats say ‘fuck’ and speak in street. Ah, called it: Ozzy Osborne joke in there somewhere. No one will get that reference nowadays. Little Nicky and South Park already got to that years ago.

>Hmm, the premise SOUNDS godawful, but execution is everything.
>the base concept of a vampire getting horrified with the realization that they’re stuck with their current body for eternity actually has some potential.
There are themes that have a lot of potential and execution needs better work. But a lot of jokes here are blatant and hang on the misfortune of our main character. Other unfortunate vampires don’t even exist here and it would’ve been a good addition to support the character--would’ve made a neat allegory between personal insecurities and being a creature of the night.
Obesity can be used... uhm... ‘properly’ in a comedy, like The Nutty Professor or... Shallow Hal I guess. There’s not a lot of dealing with the emotional impact of obesity in Fat Vampire. Eventually ‘Blood Sugar’ becomes his pimp name or something when he somehow takes over a nightclub and it all goes Tony Montana. Almost word for word.

Vampires have been so done--and this is just riding on the coattails of What We Do In The Shadows and Hotel Transylvania. I’ve had to at least spend 20 minutes skimming through this 90-minute script.
No. 1061316 ID: 11f77a
File 168142308759.png - (148.55KB , 550x500 , 024.png )

Just as I toss the script aside Emm joins with a grim and irritated look. She has our coffees though.

Emmylou: Can you believe how retarded some people are? Jason was here looking for a parking spot--but couldn’t find one--and decided to just turn around and go home for the day!

Emmylou: Our manager is ripping him a new one on the phone. The... stupidity that goes through his brain! “Oh, no parking spot guess I’ll go home doh-ho.” Dumber than a dog’s paws.

Emmylou: I hate this job sometimes. All the times. I should just start looking for tutoring opportunities for summer.

She sits right down.

Emmylou: Hold on just a second. This hat is really tight around my head and I need to adjust it. My forehead feels so hot.
No. 1061317 ID: 11f77a
File 168142310431.png - (178.99KB , 550x500 , 025.png )

No. 1061318 ID: 11f77a
File 168142312558.png - (147.79KB , 550x500 , 026.png )

No. 1061320 ID: 11f77a
File 168142353644.png - (130.04KB , 550x500 , 027.png )

Emmylou: Ah, that’s better. I've just had these locks done. Maybe I shouldn’t have them all stuffed in my hat.

Emmylou: You were saying earlier about needing to talk about something?
No. 1061362 ID: dee951

Oh god why is everyone so hot I'm a perverted bisexual ugly cyborg.

Ahem. So, I've been wondering about this person I met in passing... he might come looking for me here. Carter, a Nubian from Norris Creek. Can you keep an eye out over the next few days?
No. 1061372 ID: f2320a

Could be that our sense of attraction is completely fucked up (us secretly being humans having no basis for what is attractive features other then being disgusted by clear deformity) and we are attracted to anyone who is not clearly ugly as we have not seen a single ugly person since these dreams started, have we become hornier? since these dreams started right? Like nearly jumped our former boss.
Sort of reminds you of that story of a old lady who literally got cured of depression by a wound in her brain, food tasting better colors being more vivid, revived libido, people being more attractive.
No. 1061375 ID: a758c7

you're feeling a little bit better since yesterday, and also goddamn girl your hair is looking fabulous!

...this will sound a little nuts, but you had a dream that almost the same as yesterday, except you met a dude named carter. you both felt like things were peaceful, just floating there, and you told carter to meet you here. then you tried to open your eyes in the dream, but when you did... it was horrible. like something out of one these godawful scripts, some fucked up robot hell.

you're hoping that maybe carter will show up. these dreams have felt as real as being awake, and you really want to figure out what the hell is going on
No. 1061377 ID: dee951

I wouldn't tell her about the dream. She doesn't need to know. Simple things that are true are better. 'Met in passing', or 'met but didn't exchange much information' or maybe, 'met, but we were both high at the time and didn't get around to giving out many details'.

All that stuff gives out relevant particulars without going too off the deep end. For now, you want to speak of dream worlds and the like as hypotheticals. Unless you know the person in question values that kind of esoterica.

Perhaps you could find a community of people who get together to share experiences of subjective worlds? There has to be some sort of new age meetup. Even certain types of nerdy types believe strongly in Ancestor Simulation Theory, and might get together to talk about that. Maybe look some up online, see if there are any regional groups?
No. 1061382 ID: 4bb4df


>Emmylou: *exists*
Oh no. She's hot.

... oh, wait, right! Talking! That thing we asked to do! Tell her about your weird dreams and ask if she's ever experienced anything similar, or if the stress of trying to find a successful job has finally driven you off the deep(er) end.
No. 1061399 ID: 1371b2

…What’s her beauty routine look like? Because that is some good hair. She even did the full remove-cap swoosh thing!
No. 1061401 ID: dee951

Like, the hair swoosh thing isn't supposed to work like that AFTER you've been working a food service job for several hours, while wearing a hat! What gives?!
No. 1061466 ID: 11f77a
File 168159228519.png - (188.72KB , 550x500 , 028.png )

>Why is everyone so hot--I’m a perverted bisexual cyborg
>Could be that our sense of attraction is completely fucked up
Maybe I’m lucky to know the best-looking people. But I’ve definitely seen some uglies on the way here that I’ve looked away from. Emm has always been a very cute girl. I know I’ve had moments of envy in high school.

>Have we become hornier? Since these dreams started right?
For a moment I do think I have a bit more pep in myself right now. I dunno about hornier. I figure some days you wake up right and other days it’s a slog. I’ll admit that even when I woke up earlier than usual I still feel quite rested.
The thing with Mr. Booth was... a different matter I’d rather not think about right now.

>Perhaps you could find a community of people [...] There has to be some sort of new age meetup.
I don’t think I like those spiritual crazies trying to sell me scented oils that can prevent cancer. Maybe I’ll check the internet if anyone had similar vivid dreams but I don’t think I’d want to join a group just yet.

>Oh no. She’s hot.
I reach out to weigh those springy locks of hers.
Marlene: Goddamn, girl. Your hair is looking faaaabulous!

Emmylou: Awe, yeah. I’m so glad to finally get them done. I’ve been waiting for months when I scheduled these at my usual salon. ‘Thought I’d treat myself after graduating.

>Can you keep an eye out over the next few days?
>I wouldn’t tell her about the dream [relating to Carter]
Marlene: This may sound unusual, but I’ve been wondering about a person I’ve met in passing. We didn’t exchange much information but he, uhm, has something I need.

Marlene: He lives all the way in Norris Creek. But he knows I go here and might even try to find me one of these days.

Marlene: If you happen to be working, could you look out for a Nubian boy? His name is Carter. Should be our age, maybe a little younger. If the stars happen to align and you see him--just bring up my name to see if he knows me.

Emmylou: Oh, sure Marley! I can keep an eye out. ‘Kind of weird you didn’t share a number or anything!

Marlene: That’s just the weirdest thing--hindsight, you know...

Marlene: I-It’s not important if you don’t see him. It’s just something up in the air.

Emmylou: It’s cool, then. No problem!
No. 1061467 ID: 11f77a
File 168159231927.png - (176.67KB , 550x500 , 029.png )

We’re sipping our coffees. She’s finally able to relax and forget about the whole Jason-fiasco.

Emmylou: Seems you’ve been pretty busy, Marley. I can’t help but notice this giant. Stack. Of paper.

Marlene: Oh right. Yeah. I’m helping out a friend in Silenus. She said she’d give me a-hundred bucks if I could find one good script in this pile of shredder fodder.

Emmylou: Read some to me, then! I want to witness the beginning of the next Oscar-winning title!

Marlene: Alright, let’s start with this one.

Marlene: Snow Hell. Survival Horror.

Marlene: ...

Marlene: Is this title supposed to be... a play on words or something?

Emmylou: Lemee hear the logline!

Marlene: When a blizzard cuts them off from their cabin during their winter break vacation, a group of college friends test the limits of their hunger, morality, and friendship.

Marlene: Do people just not look at the forecast on their phones anymore?

Emmylou: Aaaaah-haha oof ouch. Next.

Marlene: Alright. The Goo-Goo-Ga-Ga. Horror—

Emmylou: Skip.

Marlene: Olsen vs. Olsen vs. Olsen vs. Olsen. Drama. It’s wife versus wife versus wife versus wife when a polygamist Mormon family wins the Mega Millions jackpot.

Marlene: Kill me.

Marlene: Ghost House. Horror Comedy. (My god, what’s with all the horror?) Forever single real estate agent has to choose between love and work when she falls for the ghost haunting the house she’s trying to sell.

Marlene: Daylight Slayings Time. Slasher. Detectives hunt down a notorious killer known to strike twice a year during the exact moment the clock changes by one hour.

Marlene: Should only strike once though... there’s only one daylight savings a year.

Emmylou: And that’s gonna be dated when we get rid of it. I’ve been reading some headlines about that now and then.

Marlene: I’m starting to feel Dolly’s pain when she handed them off to me...

That wasn’t all of them. There are still a bunch in the pile.

Emmylou: So, aside from this, you writing anything new? Wait, didn’t you quit from that one studio?
No. 1061469 ID: 1371b2

I HAD thought about going back.
A thought that is now squashed, thank you insomnia!
…Wonder if that might make a better story then this rubbish.
No. 1061486 ID: 0b31fe

Well I did have that one recurring dream but Uh... Nah it's sound too much like a Matrix rip-off.
No. 1061487 ID: 15a025

Yeah, we did. Independent work isn't going so hot though. Picked up this little reading job to get some inspo or make a few bucks.
No. 1061492 ID: f4f4ab

>snow hell
>plot hole with phones
...So? Just set it before cell phones. Period piece. Fixed!
Sure, the concept has been done. Still plenty of twists you could use. Like, perhaps one is semi-suicidal and is perfectly okay with getting killed by somebody else for the sake of the group. Of course, everybody publicly denies being okay with this. However, the suicidal one points out that only one of them has to "do what has to be done to save us all." Everybody goes quiet. Suspicious stares as everybody wonders if one of them is willing to kill.
Might have to change the title though. Perhaps "Hell Frozen Over" would be adequate.
No. 1061495 ID: e5709d

>Olsen vs. Olsen vs. Olsen vs. Olsen. Drama. It’s wife versus wife versus wife versus wife when a polygamist Mormon family wins the Mega Millions jackpot.
If this wasn't subtle propaganda against minority groups, I'd say we have a winner.
Lesbian War 2 - Get all those XCOM fans to stop shooting the Rezan Empire for five minutes and take a peek at what they think is a movie version of a Long War mod, only to reel them in with a lesbian orgy club that breaks down into a tragic action comedy from winning a fortune from a contest they all accuse the others of entering.
There is no prequel, the 2 is there to troll the audience.

>Ghost House
I wouldn't be caught undead with the title, but the premise seems like a modern-day B-movie plot.

>Ideas for your own movie script?
Goatee Simulator
A first-person movie about a nondescript protagonist, whose only defining feature is a black glove, finding a magical goat beard pelt and putting it near their field of view. What follows is a magical journey of city-destroying chaos as everything devolves into video game glitches that are exploited by the protagonist to win at life.

The First Journey
In the distant future, a team of scientists journeys through an anomalous tunnel and discovers they are following in what the ancient writings call the first journey that everyone takes, with monsters and magic to confuse the audience
The twist is that it's all a supernatural metaphor for sexual reproduction and it's no longer relevant with future tech

Ready to Burst
A fantasy superhero tragedy. Set in a post-Medieval fantasy kingdom where superheroes lead armies of superwarriors, gun-rouges, and wizards, the protagonist will slowly embrace the darkness in order to defeat the undefeatable, but at an incalculable cost. And not their life. It'll also discriminate against supervillains (and naturally accuse mere rebelling farmers of being villains, as was the custom from the historical terminology of the word)
No. 1061519 ID: 4bb4df


>period piece
Actually, you might not even need to! Have it be set up in the mountains, where the arrogant campers totally shrug off the possibility of radical changes in temperature and weather, and get snowed in as a result.
No. 1061520 ID: 11f77a
File 168167393368.png - (155.36KB , 550x500 , 030.png )

Marlene: Hmmph. I thought about going back when they offered it to me again. But squashed that immediately. Still, I was willing to help out a few friends working there so... it keeps me busy. Independent work isn’t going so hot right now.

Marlene: Other than that, I think I’m finally catching onto something. I’ve mentioned weird dreams before and maybe this one in particular has some merit.

Emmylou: Uh, which dream was that again?

Marlene: Floating in dreamspace. Like... close to a heavenly landscape of good vibes and bliss.

Emmylou: Oh right. Yeah. I remember.

Marlene: Seemed too Matrix-y at the end, so maybe I’ll change that up. It’ll certainly be better than this crap.

Emmylou: Maybe some of those scripts can be salvaged. Snow Hell wasn’t that bad of a plot. Generic, but ya know. Just rewrite it before the era of cellphones.

Marlene: Well there’s some kind of college frat-boy gimmick going on, I might need to only bring it down to the 90s or even 80s.

Emmylou: They could just be ignorant too. College frats are dumber than babies.

Marlene: That’s also true.

Marlene: If I want Dolly’s money I better show her something worth past the logline.
No. 1061521 ID: 11f77a
File 168167394676.png - (164.11KB , 550x500 , 031.png )

In the middle of our conversation this random dude comes along with a chair, and sets it between us. He puts on this suave persona as he begins to sit down.

???: Hello, girls. I see you have an available space. You wouldn’t mind if I sat here, would you?

Emmylou: snort

Marlene: There are plenty of empty seats over—

He eases in his chair.

???: Yeah but it’s always best to eat with some company. I couldn’t help but notice two lovely single ladies alone in this corner.
No. 1061527 ID: a758c7

Politely tell him to fuck off
No. 1061534 ID: d8325e

>Yeah but it’s always best to eat with some company.
>I couldn’t help but notice two lovely single ladies alone in this corner.
...Aaaaaaand you screwed yourself with that one.

"First off, we're not alone if there's two of us. Second off, not single (we don't know if Emmylou is, but it's ambiguous enough). Third, she has to get back to work in a minute."

If he persists, get loud, cause a scene, and tell him off. Which will effectively end his chances with women here.
No. 1061542 ID: 4bb4df


Unless his name is Carter and he's way less insecure in person, sorry, but we're definitely in lesbians and not interested. Bye.
No. 1061545 ID: dee951

Single is a bit of an assumption, don't you think? One of these ladies, at least, is spoken for.
No. 1061892 ID: 11f77a
File 168213349395.png - (134.89KB , 550x500 , 032.png )

This guy...

Marlene: First of all, we’re not alone if there are two of us. Second, you don’t even know if we already have husbands, or we’re a lesbian couple.

???: I don’t see a ring on either of your fingers~

Marlene: I have a boyfriend. You can leave now.

He faces Emmylou with a contented smirk.
???: How about you, gorgeous?

Emmylou: I’ll have you know every man I’ve been with has either gotten his heart broken, or died.

???: Oooh, if you’re interested in a man involved in dangerous work I’m your kind of guy. But I hope I do die before a sweet thing like you crushes my heart.

This is sooo bad. It hurts to listen.

Emmylou: Heh. You a cop?

???: Roofer. But hey, it aint no joke~ There are more deaths in construction than the police force. Usually from falling.

Marlene: You can start dropping dead, buster. She’s going back to work in a minute.

???: I would like to hear from the lady herself whether she is waiting for someone special to walk into her life~

Emm snorts again with a smirk.
Emmylou: Maybe I am. He could be walking through those doors any moment now.

???: Ooo, that’s not fair. How about I take you out for lunch while you wait? Say... at Fogertys? They have a killer shredded steak sandwich you absolutely must try. If it isn’t the best thing you’ve eaten--

Marlene: Welp, I gotta do it...
No. 1061895 ID: 11f77a
File 168213392831.png - (170.23KB , 550x500 , 033.png )

>If he persists, get loud, cause a scene, and tell him off.
This guy needs to leave. I’m standing straight up out of my seat with what little composure I can muster before I tell him to fuck off.

Marlene: Alright. That’s it! I wasn’t expecting to make a scene today but I’m left with no choice--!

Emmylou: Waitwaitwait--Marlene hoooold on. Hehe-heh It’s alriiiight. It’s alright. Hmmhmm. He does this silly crap all the time.

Marlene: You know this asshole?

Emmylou: It’s just Frederick.

He grins at that.
Frederick: Just Frederick~?

Marlene: And who the hell is Frederick?

Frederick: Yeah, I’m curious to know the Frederick in your eyes, Emmy~

Emmylou: Oh shush. We’ve been going out for a couple weeks. That’s all, Marley.

Frederick: That’s all? So tell me all about him! Is he a fun guy to be around~?

Emmylou: Ptth, Fred, stop thaaat. And I guess you’re legit. You need to work on your approaches. My girl almost kicked your ass.

They both chuckle. Frederick looks to me, hoping to ease the tension. I dunno--I get a disgusted look with all the gushy back-and-forth sweet-talking.

Frederick: There’s the heartbreak she warns about. Heh heh--I’m sorry. I guess she hasn’t talked about me yet. I shouldn’t have assumed.

He reaches a hand out to shake, smiling with pearly teeth.

Frederick: Frederick Glaser. So, you’re Marlene? You’re the artist, right? Or you work with computers or something? I think Emm may have mentioned you.
No. 1061904 ID: 273c18

Nothing bad, I hope.
No. 1061909 ID: ea0606

(Oh, he likes to joke? Jibe a bit yourself.) Pff, nice to know you're as good with details as you are at first impressions. Still, a few weeks? Why'd you never mention him, Emmy? Afraid of letting me know you're dating an asshole, or just didn't want to let on that I was now the third wheel?
No. 1061914 ID: 4bb4df


I'm not sure which was worse, the scripts we've been reading or his approach.

Anyway, I guess we can be civil. Mostly.
No. 1061943 ID: 15a025

You're a wonderful artist! An artist who paints with her words onto a paper canvas.
No. 1062150 ID: 11f77a
File 168253794086.png - (164.90KB , 550x500 , 034.png )

Something doesn’t prompt me to shake his hand. Maybe I’m still registering this guy’s first impression. It certainly wasn’t how Seb and I first met. I look at Emmy with a squint.

Marlene: Nothing bad, I hope.

She smirks. He quietly slinks his hand back down.

Marlene: Well--yeah, you could say I’m an artist. Writing is as much of an art as painting. It’s just... a thing I do. I write. Nothing major yet.

Marlene: Uh--how’d you two even meet?

Emmylou: Right here--

Frederick: There’s a hardware store just down the street where we get most of our supplies. So... I come on through here while my coworkers make the order.

Frederick: I’ve seen Emmylou work behind the counter a few days. She must’ve given me more reason to visit the hardware store any chance I get. So I thought I’d shoot my shot one morning~

Marlene: And you’ve been dating for a few weeks? I surely would’ve expected to hear all about him after the first date. Were you afraid of letting me know you were dating an asshole?

My attempt at jibes isn’t that fluent. I think Emmylou knows me well enough to pass it off as one. Frederick looks a taaad uncomfortable.

Emmylou: Oh you know how it is. Every time I get excited about a man something abruptly comes up or it just doesn’t work out. I’ve been saving my breath until the right one came along.

Frederick: You can finally breathe easy~

Emmylou: I didn’t mean to sound anxious like that, Fred. Please forgive me. You seem promising enough~

Frederick: We’ll look back on this and laugh, I’m sure. Heh.
No. 1062151 ID: 11f77a
File 168253803267.png - (150.96KB , 550x500 , 035.png )

Emmy wipes her apron down and stands.

Emmylou: Well I’ve stayed on break long enough. I’d love to keep talking but I have to get back behind the counter and kick Jason’s ass when he arrives. I’ll just leave you two at it then~

Frederick: Fogertys, though?

Emmylou: Alright, sure! Fogertys it’ll be. I’ll text you, I have a feeling it’ll be later than planned.

Frederick: No problemo! I’ll see you then ♥

She fixes her hat--keeping the curls out this time--and walks off, leaving me with him. He looks to me.

Frederick: So, uh... I see you have a lot of work. Those, uhm, papers there. You write all that?

Frederick: I’m just here to see Emm for a coffee before I have to go back to my guys. Uh. Yeah, sorry about the whole... greeting and all.

Frederick: It was good to meet you, though!

There’s that slight pause; he might leave if I say nothing or very little. I could talk with him a short while, I suppose. I also need to think whether I’ll keep working here for another hour or perhaps visit The Mnemonic Gaps.
No. 1062152 ID: f7b5ec

Look. I get I've been a bit cold and standoffish to you. Let's just say there are personal reasons involved. I am, honestly, open to making new friends, and being involved in various wacky shenanigans. Just... now is a bad time.
No. 1062153 ID: f7b5ec

Then, visibly center yourself, look aside as if haunted by something for a moment, and then, "Can we agree to try this again sometime, with no hard feelings, and have a no shenanigans for now agreement?" and only THEN offer your hand, "Truce?"
If he agrees, than say you really have to get back to your work.
No. 1062156 ID: 4bb4df


Hey, at least he apologized. Probably realizes how he came across, so that's good.

Let's just tell him we probably need to get going as well, unless we'd rather just hang out and read more awful scripts (and that he seems nicer than he seemed).
No. 1062159 ID: ccd67f

Yeah, sorry if I gave you too much shit for that approach. In my defense, you've got to learn to take as well as you give! Still, I'll forget the first impression if you do as well.
No. 1062368 ID: 15a025

Well, maybe we can try again some other time. Gotta get heading out as well.

Move on to the The Mnemonic Gaps
No. 1062371 ID: 11f77a
File 168282262902.png - (181.59KB , 550x500 , 036.png )

I rub the back of my neck.

Marlene: Hey, uh, I know I’ve acted a bit... standoffish and all. I’ve just been involved in some wacky, personal things lately and it’s just been a rough time so...

Marlene: We can try this again properly sometime. I’ll forget this first impression if you do for me. Cool?

I set out my hand to shake his, and he accepts. Pretty strong grip there.

Frederick: Yeah-yeah, no problem! I’m sure it won’t be the last you’ve seen of me.

Marlene: We’ll see Emmylou about that.

That was another joke. I think he got it.

Marlene: I’m about to leave as well. I’ve been reading scripts for two hours. With several more scripts to skim over.

Marlene: I help out friends at Silenus every now and then. I may get a-hundred bucks if I find a diamond in the rough.

Frederick: Oh neat--that movie studio? I had a roommate who worked there. He doesn’t now, but that’s the only degree of separation I have with the place.

Marlene: I was a secretary. It just didn’t work out for me.

Marlene: Well, I guess I’ll see you later. I have a band to catch. They need a songwriter and my eyes could use a break from reading garbage and let my ears listen to garbage.

Frederick: Heh heh--cool cool. See ya later, then!
No. 1062372 ID: 11f77a
File 168282266072.png - (162.17KB , 550x500 , 037.png )

I stuff the unread scripts and begin heading out to Maebe’s. The downright stupid ones are discarded in the trash. They aint company property or anything--they would’ve been tossed into the shredder after the logline. This will also make my backpack much lighter; the straps have been digging into my shoulder.

I took a scenic route to reach her house. I dunno, it’s a good day to keep walking. I have a lot of time in the world so perhaps I could use it to think a lil’ more. It’s also to listen to music to help. I’m just flipping through my current roster to see if I can find songs that could help explain the dream I’ve been having.

45 minutes later and I reach Maebe’s door. I’m anticipating terrible jams this time.


Sounds like they’re not shredding something awful in there. I carefully open the entrance.
No. 1062373 ID: 11f77a
File 168282268852.png - (164.23KB , 550x500 , 038.png )

Oh! Maebe and Nick are chilling by the door, actually. I don’t see Robin--but some kind-a noise is playing in the garage. A strum of some bass notes.

ThruummmmmmmmmmMMmmmm ThruummmmmmmmmmmmMMmm

Nick: Oh hey! Marely’s here.

Maebe: Mind keeping the door open for a bit? I need to smoke.
No. 1062386 ID: 15a025

Well, better outside than inside. Pull up some chairs on the porch and see what's up today.
No. 1062462 ID: 52d403

Only if you're sharing.
No. 1062528 ID: dee951


Nah, you dont share tobacco cigs. Now pot? Those are sharable.
No. 1062568 ID: 11f77a
File 168306281238.png - (189.01KB , 550x500 , 039.png )

>Only if you’re sharing
>Now pot? Those are sharable.
I’m not much of a smoker. Maebe would be surprised if I asked, even nonchalantly. As for pot, I’m sure the boys have some but I just never got into the stuff. If it didn’t smell like a skunk’s ass I’d totally be into it. I shift aside while holding the door open.

Marlene: Yeah, sure. I actually walked over here--I could use a sit-down myself.

The three of us walk back out to her front porch; there’s a couch underneath the awning. It’s a bit beaten up and intentionally kept outside against the elements. If I recall correctly we picked this up from a roadside dumpster. Maebe lights her cigarette and flicks the lighter closed with a cool metallic clink. There aint enough room for Nick but he doesn’t mind sitting on the floor against the railing.

Marlene: Where’s Robin? ‘He playing in the garage?

Maebe: Yeah. He’s acting weird though.

Nick: Nooo, he’s not being weird. He’s been playing only one chord that he really likes this entire session. Last night he was figuring out a sound and must’ve just clicked with it.

Maebe: He never used chords before so it opens up a new realm for him.

Marlene: There are chords for a bass guitar?

Nick: Yeah but you gotta be careful with ‘em. Because bass notes are so low a cacophony of them may overshadow the other instruments. That’s why it's best if bassists use arpeggios.

Marlene: Did you tell him to stop?

Maebe: We try and he listens but within two minutes he’s back at it. It hasn’t ruined the vibe or anything but it interrupts some things.

Nick: So now he’s just... strumming.

Maebe: Maybe you could talk some sense into him, Marley. You’re the songwriter, you made your demands last time and all.

Nick: Write anything good yet at least?
No. 1062576 ID: 4bb4df


Wait, totally chaotic thought, but ... what if we worked around it? I mean, most stuff doesn't use chords, right? It'd really set the band apart to weave that in and make something out of it.

Sure it means compensating with the other instruments at opportune times, but it's possible, and could have a really cool effect if done well.
No. 1062604 ID: 8f9bc4

we need more cowbell
No. 1062699 ID: e5709d

Dub-folk is a thing.
No. 1062702 ID: a758c7

Has he been acting weird in any other ways? Or just by focusing on the one chord? Maybe we shocks talk to him to see what’s up and hear the chord ourselves, especially with the weird stuff that’s been happening in our dreams. It might be a stretch but maybe something else is at play
No. 1062752 ID: 11f77a
File 168329957923.png - (151.84KB , 550x500 , 040.png )

>Need more cowbell
I don’t even know how to address any of that to Maebe even if it was just a humorous thing to bring up. I’ve already decided on dream-pop and shoegaze anyway.

>what if we worked around it?
Marlene: Well, if it’s not so common--perhaps we can take advantage of it. It can separate us from other bands, ya-know? Do you think you could work around it?

Maebe: I guess. It just sounds like he doesn’t know what he’s doing is all.

Marlene: Those boys always sound like they’re butting heads though. Robin does his own thing for a while, and then goes back to normal. Nick tries to get you guys to play another Chili Peppers song. He gets over it the next day.

Nick: We got about 3 weeks--I'm sure he’ll pull through.

Marlene: Yeesh, and y’all are worked up about him on day one?

Maebe: Siiiigh no. He’s just being weird. It’s nothing, I guess. Forget it.

>Has he been acting weird in other ways?
Marlene: Is that it or is he acting unusual than normal lately?

Maebe: I dunno. He’s... Robin. He’s fine. What about you, Nick? ‘He acting different?

Nick: Naw, he’s cool. Far as I can tell.
No. 1062753 ID: 11f77a
File 168329961570.png - (173.35KB , 550x500 , 041.png )

We sit silently for a moment. The breeze feels nice. Nothing prompts me to bring up much for these two--maybe because I spent so much energy just walking around. I heard Nick’s question but I don’t have the energy to answer the same thing to each person I meet. Sorry, Nick.

Marlene: I’ll go check him out then; I need a break from the sun.

Maebe: Alrighty. You go do that.

She exhales a stream of smoke.

I step inside. Even past the front door I could feel the bass-y resonance through the hallways. Are they sure he’s playing in the garage?

My ears may be a little sensitive today. Perhaps it’s like what Nick said, too many low notes and there’s a mash of fuzziness. There’s a tinge of disorientation in the air and I can see how it may be annoying to the others.

It’s not just the same chord over and over. There’s some experimental notes included--but it’s always back to the original euphony of notes. I’m no musician so I can’t tell if it’s like... G major or whatever.
No. 1062754 ID: 11f77a
File 168329981566.png - (163.98KB , 550x500 , 042.png )

That sound... It's... interesting.
No. 1062755 ID: 8f9bc4


Be cautious. Weird alien machinery is known to make powerful noises in completing its eldritch work. He might have heard that in his dreams and his chord resonates with it somehow. It doesn't seem threatening yet though, and he might have some clue about what's been happening. Just proceed with caution and... you might already be dreaming.

Also f*ck you dub-folk is the best music ever: objective fact. COUNTRY ROOOOADS...
No. 1062757 ID: 1e3b78

Oh, hey! The sense of one of the other reality layers is leaking in. Neat. Remember how in The Matrix, the red pill was specifically a sort of stimuli (well, druuuuugs) that locally disrupted the interface between the different reality lairs? Maybe this is something similar.
No. 1062770 ID: b1805a


Listen in for a little bit, then give a quick peek. Hopefully he's not rockin with it all out, you know?

(Nah, Robin's probably not THAT weird. Is he?)

But yeah, give that a listen. It looks familiar.
No. 1062773 ID: 9a2966

Is something strange again? Go, observe, listen, but don't lose your senses to this noise. Steady yourself with other sensations, a pinch if need be. Stay analytical.

What makes the noise interesting? You heard it earlier, it didn't quite affect you quite the same way then.
No. 1062792 ID: a7a180

I think it's lulling you to sleep. Lay on the couch and just let it play for a bit.
No. 1062801 ID: dee951


No, you go in, you talk to him, you encourage him, and if it seems a good idea to try and get to the other realm, you sit and meditate or whatever and bask in the effect and try to tunnel to the ugly cyborg layer and get some answers!
No. 1062811 ID: 3b86e0

Oh, Heavens, fire!
Fire! Fire!
Call Maebe and grab the extinguisher!
No. 1062812 ID: dee951


Do you smell fire? Is there smoke? Heat?
No. 1062849 ID: 15a025

Go inside. Lay down and vibe to the tunes. Unless that's actually a fire.
No. 1063061 ID: 11f77a
File 168358348703.png - (198.59KB , 550x500 , 043.png )

>Oh, Heavens, fire!
>Do you smell fire? Is there smoke? Heat?
I don’t smell anything burning. And there’s no intense heat radiating from there or crackling of fire. I think it’s safe.

>Just proceed with caution and... you might already be dreaming.
>The sense of one of the other reality layers is leaking in. Neat.
>Steady yourself with other sensations, a pinch if need be. Stay analytical
I’m so tired of feeling conflicted about this; I really hope my life isn’t fake. I’d sooner declare myself a schizo before accepting all this as a simulation. I know, I know. That’s what they’d want me to think. It aint fair is what I’m sayin’.
But you’re right; I should make an analytical approach. While it doesn’t freak me out at all, it lulls me somewhat. I observe my senses and the room around me as I gradually step forward.

>[…] his chord resonates with it somehow
>Listen in for a little bit, then give a quick peek.
>Go, observe, listen, but don’t lose your senses to this noise.
The noise amplifies in my head. Not in a way to burst my eardrums but like goosebumps to a melody or lament. It reminds me of the dream, oh yes, which makes me miss being there. While weird (with occasional sudden nightmares at the end) I still want to go back. ‘See if Carter is alright, too. It’s a feeling best described as looking forward for the coming weekend.
The thought of taking a nap is enticing, but it’s not out of my control. I can remain awake and listen for a little while.


And listen...

I fear once I finally see through--it’ll be gone again. Otherwise I’ll be staring at this door like an idiot when the others come back around.

But it’s time to see the other side. I gently push my hand to open the door wider.
No. 1063062 ID: 11f77a
File 168358355480.png - (160.55KB , 550x500 , 044.png )

Hrmmgh... well... it was nice as it lasted.

I see Robin next to his amp, leaning against it. He strums his bass guitar. Again. Again. Slow. It’s still a nice chord. A warm thrum. It’s like he’s trying to feel the vibrations while adjusting the little knobs on his instrument. I don’t know what they’re called. I attempt to pop in a word when I can.

Marlene: Yo. Uh... everything cool?

He peeks an eye open and is pleased to see me.

Robin: Oh! Hey Marley! Everythin’s cool. What’s up?

Robin: I brought along my old keyboard if you want to fiddle around with that. I’ve yet to hook it up and all.

Robin: Did everyone go outside? Anyway, I think I’m onto something here. The others are tired of it but I’ve been thinking of the kind of sound you want.

Robin: Sometimes the riff is so good that you just want to hear it over and over again. Maybe for 32 minutes!
No. 1063073 ID: 8ae023

Even if you don't know for sure if you believe it, you could use the language of the relevant context to explain your actions, his actions, and the weirdness.

"You were totally onto something... but not a song, more an effect. I think we both were having a weird reaction to that, like, you were tapping something cosmic. Could you start up again while I try to meditate on it? I swear you were making a musical redpill to see another layer of the Matrix. Dude!"
No. 1063075 ID: 8f9bc4

A good riff is like a warm bath washing over you. You don't wanna leave the tub, but if you don't open your eyes and something horrible is happening to wake you screaming out of your own nightmares then... wait that metaphor got away from me.
No. 1063083 ID: 273c18

Ask him to play it again.
Maybe ask him if he's seen the dream.
No. 1063184 ID: b1805a


Tell him it reminds you of something, but you're really not sure what. Not like a song or anything you've heard before, but a feeling.

See how he replies.
No. 1063392 ID: 11f77a
File 168376938966.png - (163.54KB , 550x500 , 045.png )

Marlene: Yeah... and to be honest I think you’re totally onto something. More than a song but it really shook something up.

Robin: You think?

>Maybe ask him if he’s seen the dream
>Tell him it reminds you of something […] See how he replies.
I try to be a bit low-key when asking.

Marlene: I dunno how else to explain it, it seemed a bit cosmic is all. Where’d you learn that--in a dream? Can you, uh, visualize it and all? Colors and bubbles and things?

Robin: Huh? Nah I was just... fooling around and really liked it last night before bed.

Marlene: No dream?

Robin: Nope. Why?

>Tell him it reminds you of something, but you’re really not sure what
Marlene: Oh... maybe I heard it in a dream once. Thought it would be, ya know, funny. Coincidence. Maybe nostalgic, I dunno. It’s not just the sound but I’m really feeling something from it.

Marlene: If I could describe it--it’s like... taking a warm bath and slowly dunking your head under.

Robin: That’s a good thing I assume. I can totally dig it that way.

Marlene: Play it again?

Robin: Oh, this?

He strums. I can tell there’s less treble the way he adjusts the sound so everything melds together into a happy bloom. It’s not so intense when I was approaching the door--but maybe something triggered my brain to reminisce the dream.
No. 1063393 ID: 11f77a
File 168376954253.png - (147.71KB , 550x500 , 046.png )

Marlene: Look, I really like it and you should experiment some more. But you ought to play around with it later at home. I get that it’s a neat little riff you discovered but the other guys are beginning to lose their patience.

Robin: Well... yeah I s’pose. I was hoping maybe they’d just catch on.

Maebe busts in with Nick behind her. She flicks what remains of her cigarette butt on the stone floor. Nick picks up his guitar.

Maebe: Alright, dickholes. It’s time to play something!

Maebe: So you gonna join us Robin or what?

He stands up from his spot, stretching his back.

Robin: Yeah sure. I... guess I can take a break from something.

Maebe: Good. Which song? Ya know what? I’m choosing the song. Richter Scale.

Nick: Richter Scale!

Robin: Alright, Richter Scale.

They adjust their amps and settings. I could attempt to write lyrics again as they play. Well... not lyrics but jot down notes with a fresher mind. I think I have a bit more to go on. I’ve thought of the idea to just meditate and let sound flow through me.

I know I tried writing last time and took a nap. Maybe this’ll be different. There could be other options I could do.

• I could jot down rhymes for a new song
• Meditate and enjoy listening for a while
• Fiddle around with the keyboard (I aint so good, I'll keep it simple)
• Read the rest of my scripts, get those shitty stories over with
No. 1063414 ID: 8f9bc4


Completely miss that they call their song Richter Scale and settle down for a nice peaceful meditative daydream. And then the music starts, and you realize there will be no napping within the nearest 3 blocks for some time.
No. 1063599 ID: 11f77a
File 168390973489.png - (266.32KB , 550x500 , 047.png )

>And then the music starts, and you realize there will be no napping within the nearest 3 blocks for some time.
Riiight. I might need to pop my earbuds in just in case. I settle in a corner and chill out a moment as they tune their guitars.

Maebe: One, two, three, four..!



[Verse 1]
Hey there little ol’ man
Why don’t you tell me your master plan
And even if you don’t think so
I could tell that it’s workin’

I’ll draw a line in the sand
You’ll draw a little line in the sand
Say the name that you’ve given me
And I’ll be right over


While they’re often a loud bunch, they can be a decent loud bunch. The song aint annoying at least. I kind-of focus on Robin and his bass notes first. It fills the background with a rumble as Nick plays a post-rock strum. I take my small notebook out to scribble on: sometimes I can write with my eyes closed so I can meditate a lil’ bit. That’s totally a talent I have. Yeah...
No. 1063601 ID: b1805a


Let's keep listening and give that cool talent a run. See what happens.
No. 1063615 ID: 8f9bc4


wuh oh looks like one of those slots is you. Be ready to meditate... to the beat!
No. 1063642 ID: 11f77a
File 168393249951.png - (231.66KB , 550x500 , 048.png )

>Be ready to meditate... to the beat!
>Let’s keep listening and give that cool talent a run.
Scribble away I go. Their lyrics may distract a little, such as a few lines I may need to dissect. But I go on a roll with writing.


[Verse 2]
Here you’ve fallen again
It took a while for you to stand
You’ll make a pedestal out of me
So you can do it all over

A-hundred memories then
How could we’ve known what could’ve been
Have you wondered what kind of name
I have given you, little man

And it never would’ve crossed the mind
I don’t think it
Ever will
It was another day at the time
You’re still the same as
Ever been
Let’s go off in the wood to find
Another gift for
You to steal
You can laugh at me all the while
And I’d still do it
All again

No. 1063645 ID: 11f77a
File 168393330457.png - (238.79KB , 550x500 , 049.png )


[Verse 3]
Here comes trouble again
I could lead if you grab my hand
In that moment you were still
There was only that blank stare

In the middle of it
You’re made a little fool once again
In the midst of that blank stare
I saw that moment it settled in.

And it never would’ve crossed the mind
I don’t think it
Ever will
It was another day at the time
You’re still the same as
Ever been
Let’s go off in the wood to find
Another gift for
You to steal
You can laugh at me all the while
And I’d still do it
All again


No real prompt; respond freely however you like for now
No. 1063688 ID: 11f77a
File 168399766552.png - (234.36KB , 550x500 , 050.png )


What’s going on with your mind?
You gotta pay attention to this Richter--
What’s been going on with your mind?
You gotta pay attention to this Richter--
What’s going on with your mind?
You gotta pay attention to this Richter--
What’s going on with your mind?
You gotta pay attention to this Richter--




The notes hold until they distort into a soft burble.
No. 1063689 ID: 11f77a
File 168399774686.png - (145.95KB , 550x500 , 051.png )

Maebe throws her sticks up and they clatter against the wall behind her.

Maebe: Fuck yeah. Finally...

Nick: Yeah, baby!

Maebe: I need another smoke...

Marlene: Those were some... interesting lyrics. I thought the ‘richter scale’ would have something to do with shaking the entire block.

Robin: Was it good, though?

Marlene: Hmm...

Marlene: It wasn’t bad~

Nick: Damn straight. I told you we’ve been practicin’! Steele City is going to be our ticket out of Springford so I’ve been digging in our old notes and demos waaaay far back since middle school.

Marlene: Sounds like you’re coming along just fine without a lyricist, then.

Nick: Well, uhm, I mean, we got some good songs and all but... maybe a little advising could help.

Robin: Yeah I’ve noticed you’ve been writing some things too, Marley.

Nick: Hey, lemee see what’chu got.
No. 1063690 ID: 11f77a
File 168399791361.png - (213.50KB , 550x500 , 052.png )

Nick yanks the notebook from my lap. I aint mad, but I’m closer to being miffed. I mean, I could’ve given it to them if I rechecked what I’ve written.

Marlene: Oh, yeah. Sure. I guess. Go nuts...

Nick: *ahem*

Nick: I’m lying floating like eyelid movies through viscid air descending in a gradual dive we can fall for a million days as the brightness within overshadows me in the company of absence where we become real but neither there or here between calliope and pluto and drowse in a sun-stained grass and reed field bathed in happy tears and from the sky leaks a great noise dripping bittersweet distractions of a tether that is leading clearly feeding all--uh...

Nick: Hold on... I lost myself...

Robin: Uh--what?

Nick: --feeding all the things I don’t believe in and I’ll drift again in the soft metallic yawn of a faraway sentimental bloom as you stop time managing to somehow find a way to turn my head into beautiful sound and color whispering every autumn to the young while I don’t know where I am but finally where I want in a euphoric lament of epiphany--

Nick: Marlene, what the fuck am I reading? You really wrote this stuff?
No. 1063691 ID: dee951

"Eh, I've just been having some really kooky dreams of late. You should see my dream logs. Though, uh, you can't actually see my dream logs. Though this was more of a daydream sort of thing, so it's more coherent. What, my notebook writings aren't purple enough for you? I can make it more purple..."

(this more purple thing is meant to be an amusing sort of friendly threat)
No. 1063693 ID: e5709d

"What? I needed to get my emotions on paper in time with your pace. Needs revisions."
No. 1063696 ID: dee951

Realize that normal people can't generally write well with their eyes closed. Automatic writing typically requires some level of seeing or being aware of the location of the paper so the script doesn't distort down the page. Hey, possibly being an ugly cyborg on one of the levels of reality has cognitive benefits, hooray!
No. 1063697 ID: 1195dc

“The eyes are but a guide, my hands know the way.”

That makes me wonder…
How well can you echolocate?
It might be asssociated with bats but people can and do that. The trick is getting good enough to be able to navigate with your eyes closed…
No. 1063698 ID: 273c18

Tell them it's stream of consciousness, you need to edit it into something sensible.
No. 1063707 ID: 8f9bc4


Wow, uh, maybe you should actually look at what you're writing. Those are terrible lyrics. They don't even rhyme!

Seriously though tell them it's random; you just write with your eyes closed to ease your mind sometimes. It's like doodling. Most you could get out of it is the song was making you feel sentimental.
No. 1063749 ID: 15a025

It's more, just thoughts and feelings. Doodling words with your mind. You've been having some weird dreams lately and just wanted to get some feelings down on paper.
No. 1063772 ID: dee951


They are not terrible lyrics, lyrics don't have to rhyme in particular, they need to be appropriately poetic and rhythmic in the right way.

There is more than the formulaic 3.5 minute pop song, sheesh.
No. 1063893 ID: 11f77a
File 168425839198.png - (137.82KB , 550x500 , 053.png )

>How well can you echolocate?
Not well, I assume.

>Realize that normal people can’t generally write well with their eyes closed
Well I’ve already known that’s a given. I, however, am (adequately) attuned to the motions of handwriting letters with my eyes shut--sort of like typing without looking at your hands. It was something I taught myself in high school when I was tired every morning at seven. I would sit up straight to give the illusion of being at attention, eyes would close, and I write. Yet I don’t think I can write in a straight line for long.

Marlene: What’s wrong? Are my writings not purple enough for you? I can make it more purple.

Nick: Eh—whuh? Purple?

Marlene: Uh... sigh nevermind about that. Look, I needed to get my emotions on paper before it lost me. Sure, it needs revisions but I can edit them into something sensible later. Mkay?

Marlene: Maybe I was looking for something sentimental-sounding. I haven’t written like that in months, you know; I’ve been having some weird dreams lately so perhaps I could jot them down.

Marlene: Unless you’d like to sift out the ‘good parts’ yourself.

He snorts and hands back my notebook.

Nick: Uhm. Uh. Ya know what? That’s fine. You can fine-tune it. Looks like Rob has his sound so I ought to find something to go along with it.

Robin: Those words still sound trippy as hell, though. I can... definitely like it! I’m sure it means a lot to somebody. I was never good at double-meanings and whatnot.
No. 1063894 ID: 11f77a
File 168425844196.png - (151.31KB , 550x500 , 054.png )

The boys would go off on their own discussion. Maebe’s back from another cigarette break and freestyles on the drums for a bit. Nothing crazy, just a bit of experimenting.

I think my work here is done for now. I can hang with them for another hour or so before returning home. The rest of the scripts in my backpack aren’t so good either. I don’t think the author thought hard enough about naming his story Golden Streams.

Among the rest is The Crackling, Mega Saturn, Apocalypse: Vulgar Storm, Order and Terror, and Countdown to Darkness.

I’m ready to head out whenever.
No. 1063898 ID: 9e7305

Maybe he knew exactly what he was doing. Check Mega Saturn next!
No. 1063901 ID: 24081b

Mega Saturn then Countdown to Darkness!
No. 1063958 ID: b1805a


Yeah, if there's nothing left to do, might as well head out and reflect on how our weird autonomic writing might just elaborate on the more subconscious aspects of the dream.

(I feel we should memorialize all these horrible show names as some kind of kind of warning on how NOT to do the thing.)
No. 1064120 ID: 11f77a
File 168452973156.png - (140.14KB , 550x500 , 055.png )

I say goodbye to the Gaps and take a long walk home. Skipping Silenus, I’ll be there a lil’ early. Seb won’t come in for another couple of hours (unless something real shitty happened with a repair).

I could give some of these a read. Let’s see...

Mega Saturn. Surreal Science Fiction. Amid a galactic expansion of humanity, cryonic technician Marat Bower discovers and is enamored by a strange alien artifact known as The Cairn.
Yeah. Enamored could be an understatement. Slow start; there seems to be very minimal interaction with the world outside our protagonist’s space condo. I skip through a few pages because it’s so bizarre. I guess it’s symbolism? There’s a device that spews pink syrup depending on its mood? There’s a beast the protagonist often sees (or hallucinates?) as a multi-limbed red wolf called the Hate Machine, who requests some drug called Nixchromo. He’s portrayed like the Wonderland Caterpillar. Littered around his domain are the ‘heads of fairies’ he’s bitten off while lying in a pile of pillows. I think Bower is just losing his mind as a monotonous worker in this futuristic gray space civilization.
In vivid detail by the end of the second act there’s a musical number when the main character gets... intimate with the Cairn. There aren’t exactly specifics when it comes to sex scenes in screenplays; usually in a script it would be abbreviated to ‘they make love’. But this cryogenicist does some kind of... ‘courtship display’ to the Cairn. It’s not even, uh, handheld-sized; it’s a monolith. Could it be the movie Silenus is looking for to bring it back to its prime? Beats me.

Countdown to Darkness is another Science Fiction film, but probably utilizes action more. In a world taken over by a race known as the ‘darkmongers’, Elias Bethesda is a one-man rebel tasked to save his village when it’s time for the culling.
It’s your basic action flick. The science-y stuff is just a backdrop. Bit campy. B-movie vibe with bad dialogue. The script goes back and forth from the hero to the villainous leader chewing the scenery. It’s surprisingly a lot of dialogue and not a lot of action. The author tries to make it some diplomatic space opera but falls flat. Elias is part of a desert village like Tatooine moisture farms. He pulls a Rambo basically and that’s it. They try to set up a sequel.

I stop by the grocer’s on my way home; I should plan what food to make as I look through these stories. Maybe other plans for the rest of the night as well.
No. 1064126 ID: dee951


Well Mega Saturn isn't crap, it's that kind of kooky low budget art house flick that never makes any money but could maybe win a lot of very niche awards? That's not actually useless to the right people.
No. 1064139 ID: 8f9bc4

Countdown to Darkness has potential, if they can figure out something less pathetic to name their bad guys other than "darkmongers." Considering the rest of the script is amateurish trash, it's not likely that potential will be realized. I'd tell them to resubmit their idea once they've mentally matured beyond the age of 12.

Mega Saturn seems really promising. The author sounds a bit sex deprived though, finding weird sideways approaches to obsessing over making love. If there was some sort of twist to it, like a dark secret to the Cairn or some greater meaning behind the protagonist humping the hallucinatory space rock, it might work. As-is, it just sounds like an excuse to get some actor pole dancing against a space rock.
No. 1064148 ID: e5709d

Countdown to Darkness could literally take the timed mission approach and slowly decrease in quality as the timer approaches zero. Successful sabotages against the antagonists' plan to terraform reality would bring the quality back, meaning you get slow degradation of fight scenes into dim, gory blood-splattering battles between puppets that bursts into quality 4K victory scenes the moment the McGuffin device is blown up. This lets you save on the action animation budget and trick the audience into cheering for it!
No. 1064185 ID: 708905

So Mega Saturn just sound arthouse as fuck, which is fine if you like that sort of thing and have the right team to make it but at best it's going to be a niche cult hit.

Countdown to Darkness, swap some dialog for action and you've got solid B-grade sci-fi action. Not great not terrible.
No. 1064191 ID: a7a180

Countdown to Darkness is serviceable, just needs some rewrites.
Make some soup. Tomato soup with something to dip in it is delicious.
No. 1064202 ID: 8f9bc4


Be sure to pretend you're a vampire. That's an important part of tomato soup.
No. 1064246 ID: 15a025

Keep it cheap for dinner. Something simple like rice.
No. 1064355 ID: b1805a


Why be boring when you can toss in some thyme, cayenne, and a bay leaf after sauteing onions, celery, and green bell peppers together with sausage (or mushrooms if you'd like to go vegetarian), then add a can or two of red kidney beans (mashing about a third) to make some delicious red beans and rice (and potentially have some leftovers)?
No. 1064359 ID: 11f77a
File 168478556616.png - (205.84KB , 550x500 , 056.png )

>Mega Saturn seems really promising
>Well Mega Saturn isn’t crap, it’s that kind of kooky low budget art house flick that never makes any money.
Hmm, I guess I could persuade Dolly to look into Mega Saturn, but she’ll think I’m a crazy person out for that $100. Which I am. I want that hundred! She never said Silenus had to actually make it a movie! The scripts will obviously be edited and handed off to several writers. The only obstacle is that Mega Saturn’s author will probably try to keep it to the original script to maintain his vision--meanwhile something like Countdown to Darkness can easily be reworked with the right people. This is kind of a best-of-the-worst situation and I could just hand in both anyway.

I’ve been walking all day so I’m very sweaty right now, especially from picking up the pace to get home before the grocery bags rip.

>Make some soup.
>Keep it cheap for dinner.
I couldn’t afford to purchase anything fancy like salmon or some ribeye. I’ve bought a plethora of ingredients for future dishes as well, something with red beans and sautéing onions perhaps. Got some milk. I’ll make something simple for now, like tomato soup. There were other things I needed to stock up on like toilet paper. $70 bucks spent, man...

My backpack is tossed onto a couch and I start putting food away. Turn on the television, play something over Netflix, and figure out what to do with the rest of my life.
No. 1064360 ID: 11f77a
File 168478559728.png - (147.59KB , 550x500 , 057.png )

Sebastian walks in the apartment tired as hell. But I’m there to sweetly greet him from around the kitchen counters.

Marlene: Welcome home~

Seb: Hello, hon. Huh, are you... you’re cooking something?

Marlene: I sure am.

Seb: And not take-out? Or UberEats? Or TV dinners? Or leftover take-out?

Marlene: Maybe I’ll just make enough dinner for one...

Seb: I’m kid-ding. It smells very ... tomato-y. What is it?

Marlene: Tomatoes ... uh, soup. Gonna try to make it from scratch instead of from a can. I mean, there are canned crushed tomatoes but you get the gist. Grilled cheeses to complement. May be ready in about 20 minutes though. (And some rice thrown in.)

Seb: Well then, before I talk your ear off about work I’m just gonna get naked and take a shower.

Marlene: You go do that, hun.

And there he goes; he smells like a cold garage and a hint of his coworker’s cigarettes and vape pens. In other news: makin’ soup is easy; I can pay half-attention and throw away the last of the terrible scripts while keeping a few candidates.
No. 1064361 ID: 11f77a
File 168478564640.png - (150.78KB , 550x500 , 058.png )

Seb: You got some red on your lips.

Marlene: I’m a vampire, couldn’t you tell?

Seb: Oh? Have I been fooled into eating some blood soup or something?

Marlene: I read a terrible script this morning about a fat vampire. He becomes some kingpin pimp nicknamed ‘Blood Sugar’ by the end.

He snorts and chuckles for a while. I guess he finds that pretty goddamn funny.

Seb: Horhorhohoho *snort* Sorry~ eh-heh heh That was so out of left field. Did you approve it?

Marlene: I dunno. They were all terrible to be honest. A few might raise some eyebrows. I hear Silenus aint doing so hot so it sounds like they need a golden script to bring them back on top.

Seb: You gonna write them one yourself?

Marlene: Don’t I wish. I can write better than any of these amateurs.

Seb: I’m glad you’re doing something, though. Even if it only happens today, ya know? I haven’t seen you ... ‘sure’ about something in a while, ya know? I dunno what.
No. 1064362 ID: d57b3f

Now might be a good time to come clean to him.
No. 1064371 ID: 8f9bc4

What did you have to come clean to, again?

Also what is a sheep doing eating a ribeye steak?
No. 1064372 ID: dee951


There are obviously SOME sort of domesticated animals in this universe. And it's difficult for pure herbivores to have the caloric energy density in their food for full sapience. And she needs to come clean to her boyfriend that she had a steamy kiss with a guy who wasn't him, before she came to her senses and pulled back.
No. 1064373 ID: 8f9bc4


But perhaps... she really is a vampire!!!?!

And oh right, her old boss. He is a handsome devil. Can't say she was wrong about kissing him, but I also can't say that her relationship with Seb could last if she worked at that place again. She can’t go back to that place so it's probably safe to just... it was just one time, nothing to bother him about.
No. 1064378 ID: dee951


Wow. Every single part of that message was wrong. She was absolutely wrong to kiss him, regardless of how handsome he is or isn't, that is NOT how committed exclusive relationships are supposed to work, AND she needs to tell the person she is in a committed relationship with about the indiscretion ASAP. And what does keeping her relationship with Seb have anything to do with what white collar place in the area she works at?? The two concepts are entirely unrelated. Also, delaying increases the negative ramifications of the eventual explosion when he inevitably finds out AND will eat at her!
No. 1064380 ID: 8f9bc4


No. 1064414 ID: b1805a


Please take it to /questdis or the IRC channel Discord server. You are encouraged to create a thread if one does not exist.
No. 1064546 ID: 11f77a
File 168504402223.png - (176.24KB , 550x500 , 059.png )

>Now might be a good time to come clean to him
>It’s probably safe to just... it was just one time, nothing to bother him about.
I choke on my soup! Have I forgotten about that already? Just when the day was starting to feel like things aint so bad.

Seb: Whoah! Hey, hey. You alright?

Marlene: hnnk--coofcoof--yeah! ... It was a hot spot I guess. Hnk! You liking your soup?

Seb: It aint bad! It’s real good, Marley ♥

Seb: Drink your milk.

Marlene: Yeah-- thanks.

Oh man, why bring that up? I mean--of course it needs to be brought up. Does it have to be brought up at all, though? I’m willing to dismiss that kiss yesterday due to some weird supernatural shit going on in my brain. He’ll ask why I did it and I can’t respond with ‘lol, I dunno’.

Nonono. Not until I get to the bottom of this strange behavior. I just have to be more aware of what's happening to me. It slipped through once and never again.

Seb: You sure you’re good? You just got quiet all of a sudden.

Marlene: I’m fine! Tongue burnt. Will recover. Yes.

Marlene: Please tell me about your day at work!

Seb: Oh? Eh, it was nothing special. A bunch of cars to be inspected so it’s monotonous stuff. I replaced an oil pressure sending unit. That was fun. Not really. Work aint ever fun but I’m good at it. Or at least every project done feels good.

Seb: Say, is there anything you’d like to do tonight? We haven’t been out of the apartment for a while--I mean we can still stay in if you want. I just don’t know what I’m in the mood for. That’s all.
No. 1064550 ID: 006eb8

I've been really stressed, my mind has been going weird places of late. Think you could pamper me for a bit, then you could help me banish my sorrows with under a wave of orgasms and some happy exhaustion?
No. 1064552 ID: b1805a


>Getting out of the apartment
May have done that all day, but ... why not? Anywhere around to take a leisurely walk? Maybe a park or just some quiet street or something?

Just somewhere to talk about nothing and cool down, at least mentally.
No. 1064554 ID: 8f9bc4

boink his brains out!
No. 1064616 ID: f2320a

Been stressed if you dont have any ideas on where to go or do we could just spend some quality time as i fuck you up with fucking you will be like a mountain goat after i take you down brokeback mountain
No. 1064665 ID: dee951


Let's try to not be too cheesy in how we let him know, hahaha. Unless you have a specific way to be cheesy that you two enjoy?
No. 1064671 ID: 11f77a
File 168523111078.png - (223.58KB , 550x500 , 060.png )

Marlene: Oh, I dunno--I’ve been out walking all day. I know you mean out of the apartment together. My legs are just aching a lil’. I ought to ride the bus tomorrow if they still hurt.

Seb: Fair enough.

Marlene: While today was a little better than usual, my mind has still been going to weird places. Think you can pamper me for a bit?

Seb: Oh, sure. Let me help with the dishes and we could just chillax on the couch.


Ah, that’s better. Not much to pamper other than brushing my horns or massaging my head. Seb’s catching up on a show where he’s a full season behind--I already know what’s happening so there’s less need to be invested. Gives me a reason to be invested in something else~
Other than the occasional quick handjob there hasn’t been much intimacy in the past month-and-a-half due to the unsynchronized lows we’ve been going through. Ya know: he arrives home tired and is quick to doze off one day--or I’m depressed and don’t have the will to initiate sex on another day.
No. 1064672 ID: 11f77a
File 168523115492.png - (179.88KB , 550x500 , 061.png )

Somehow, I’ve segued away from pampering. We transfer to the bed, Seb’ll have to watch the rest of the episode later--he’s got other things to tend to.

Undressed, I slink my body over the cool bedsheets and present myself. A single hand grabs a cheek and the other guides him to my waiting slit.

Seb: Ahh~

Marlene: Hmm, missed it~?

Seb: It’s been for-fucking-ever.

Marlene: Just make it last.

Marlene: For me~

He slides in like he’s testing my depth; a careful rocking to agitate his nerves. He thrums. I coo. And I feel myself stretching to fit his girth. With two warm palms resting on my hips (as those thumbs nudge into my softer rump) he picks a tempo to fuck me to. And he's hilting me with each full thrust.

Damn this feels fucking good.

No. 1064673 ID: dee951

Keep it up, keep at it! You want to end up with both of you as exhausted puddles of goo at the end! ;)
No. 1064674 ID: a758c7

tell him how good he feels and how thick he is and how deep he's going, it'll drive him nuts
No. 1064675 ID: 8f9bc4

Hold him tight with everything you have; he's wonderful
No. 1064676 ID: e5709d

Did you forget the condom?
No. 1064677 ID: dee951


She might have an implant, at her age. That'd make sense.
No. 1064678 ID: 2fe8b5

Yeah, take it! Seriously though, that's pretty much all you can do unless you change positions.
No. 1064693 ID: 8f9bc4

That's the beauty of sex. The more you do it, the more you want it, and the less you need to do anything else. Your body's needs aren't complicated right now, so just give into your urges and do what you need to do.
No. 1064740 ID: f2320a

can also pull out as he pulls out and slam back as he slams in get a pace going that makes your backfat jiggle
No. 1064811 ID: 11f77a
File 168549140443.png - (143.48KB , 550x500 , 062.png )

Seb’s taking it easy, I’m good with that~ When his hips roll my soft, callipygous caprine ass bows and taps against his lower belly. Tip to base, it’s a long thrust that ends in a thirsty wet clap.

I’m not usually a vocal gal. Sure, I utter out some moans or wince but Seb always knows I’m enjoying it. I dunno what it is; I guess I like bearing up. I like the tension; the stifling. It leads to a fair amount of kegel holds onto his member. But his thrusting is near-frictionless from our fluids and all attempts to grip his sex is fruitless~

We seem to find an unspoken intermission. His hand nudges my rear and I voluntarily tip over. I shimmy around to lay on my back next and scoot further across the bed. He follows and we’re both grinning like sinners.

Dirty talk aint my forte. I suppooose I can indulge.

Marlene: Fuck Your uh prick feels real good...in me.

Seb: Damn hrnnff Four years and you finally notice some things, huh?

Marlene: Shut your mouth and get on top of me~

He hunches over and his chest hovers above. In missionary he changes his rhythm to a faster romp. His body weighs against mine and I’m pinned to the mattress. Proceeding after is a percussion of hips. I try to be more vocal this time with my head tilted and mind drifting. His muzzle nips at my throat and pecks alongside it.

There! I feel him flexing~ Although, what tipped me off more was his drawn-out grunt. I hold onto his shoulders, my heels press into his lower back as he locks into me.

It’s fine if he finishes in me, I take the pill. We’ve had close calls before so ... we aren’t strangers to dealing with repercussions.

Seb: Ooah...

Marlene: Yes~ mmm There we go. All in, big guy.

No. 1064812 ID: 11f77a
File 168549151939.png - (198.00KB , 550x500 , 063.png )

We cuddle for a while and stare at the ceiling. It’s at this post-coitus clarity that I ponder some things. Things like ... I’m gonna get old and ugly and I should fuck as much as I can. But those are only sparse thoughts--I don’t think Seb has the energy for a second round. He’s pretty beat. Not that I’m going to immediately act like I'm holding onto my youth for dear life.

Shit, man. Wasn’t I just ten years younger a moment ago?

He doesn’t seem to have that mindset. I think he’s crashed. Men~
No. 1064826 ID: dee951

Just, uh, to confirm. How many years have you been together with Seb? Four, right? RIGHT?
No. 1064842 ID: a758c7

Give him some sleepy smooches, then hug him close for a bit~
No. 1064851 ID: 273c18

Your dry spell is probably why you kissed your boss. Horny thoughts lead to no thoughts.
No. 1064897 ID: 11f77a
File 168556764305.png - (132.14KB , 550x500 , 064.png )

>How many years have you been together?
Yes, four years. Met in freshman college. Whatever silly banter we had was just that, silly.

>Your dry spell is probably why you kissed your boss.
Sigh. I would’ve thought I’d be better than that.

Eventually my eyes are too tired to stay open. I wanted to clean up a bit before I start to crash. Pop a melatonin gummy. The lights turn off and it’s easy to go straight to sleep...

Just the darkness of my eyelids and the thrum of the ventilation now.

No. 1064898 ID: 11f77a
File 168556770690.png - (162.36KB , 550x500 , 065.png )

There comes a pleasant humming above me. I feel waves of heat rake through my hair. I realize my head is softly being stroked. I hear a voice; he speaks in ASMR. Does that even make sense how I describe it? It makes me want to sleep within the... sleep. It’s real nice.

It’s him.

Carter: Hmmhmm. Well, looks like we’re back again~

Carter: Have fun in the ‘real world’?
No. 1064901 ID: 2fb6ee

Oh! Hey Carter. Glad you're okay. I was worried about you. Sure, I had fun there! Say, what do I look like in the Cyborg world?
No. 1064903 ID: e5709d

"I reviewed a hundred stupid excuses for applications for chump change and then got laid. You tell me."
No. 1064904 ID: b1805a


Does it sound like that one weird riff our buddy Robin was playing?
No. 1064906 ID: 03e744

... here again. Any chance he found out anything about this place, or even remembered it when he was awake? Is it possible to get a closer bead on his location to find him in the real world?
No. 1064907 ID: 273c18

Yeah, you went to the meeting spot but didn't see him. Then you did some band practice and spent time with your boyfriend. What's he been up to?

What was he saying at the end of the last time you were in this orange place? Also did he see anything when he opened his eyes?
No. 1064908 ID: c2abc4

Can you swap phone numbers? You seem more coherent this time.
No. 1064970 ID: dac950

You...didn't leave in all this time?
No. 1064974 ID: 8f9bc4

Don't worry about opening your eyes, just relax here and feel your world. Can you feel, or hear anything around you besides Carter? Maybe you can explore together. It would be nice to know if he saw you at the meeting spot, or if your real worlds do not coincide.
No. 1064975 ID: dee951

What happened at the end there last time from your perspective? What were you saying? What happened in your day afterwards?
No. 1065063 ID: 11f77a
File 168577252405.png - (146.69KB , 550x500 , 066.png )

>Can you feel, or hear anything around you besides Carter?
>Does it sound like that one weird riff our buddy Robin was playing?
Not quite, but still very ambient undertones which I can only describe as a ‘blooming’. It gives me wonderful goosebumps. It takes me a moment to realize where I am.

Marlene: Carter!

A burst of energy through me and I sit straight up. My hands touch him as if I expect an illusion. But he’s there--feeling as real as can be. As real as last time.

Marlene: I’m glad you’re okay. I was afraid I may have killed you.

Carter: Heh, I seem to be breathing just fine. How would you have killed me?

Marlene: I meant-- I don’t know. To be forcibly kicked out of the simulation could have some consequence, that’s all.

Carter: That is, if it’s all still a simulation.

Marlene: I get it. But I’m not convinced otherwise. This is just all too damn weird. I mean, a third night in a row where I’ve been in the dream? First time’s an experience. Second, a coincidence--

Carter: Well you know what, Marlene?

Marlene: What?

He takes my hand.

Carter: I was afraid for you too.
No. 1065064 ID: 11f77a
File 168577255632.png - (150.96KB , 550x500 , 067.png )

I squeeze his palm and look at it. I feel a lot more content now. I’m wondering if he’s been here all this time while I was awake and living my life. There are a lot of questions but I better be careful not to ask them all at once. I’ll get to them all eventually.

Marlene: So, about last time... Did you open your eyes? Were you able to see anything?

He pauses and I can see some regret on his face. His hands knead together.

Carter: Uh..n-no I never ... opened them. I’m sorry, Marlene. I just couldn’t force myself. I was scared.

Marlene: Don’t be. I shouldn’t have pressured you like that. I should be the one to apologize for leaving you alone here. But at least you had this place to remain at peace while I was gone.

Carter: That’s the thing, though. Immediately after you disappeared I woke up too. It was as if the dream turned off like a switch.

Marlene: What?

Carter: I know! I woke up early in my bed without a stir. I even went back to sleep after ten minutes. Nothing. Or at least there were normal dreams. But I wouldn’t remember those.

Marlene: That is weird.
No. 1065065 ID: 11f77a
File 168577260888.png - (129.27KB , 550x500 , 068.png )

Carter: So...

Carter: What did you see? Did you see the, uh, aliens tending to us?

Marlene: No. I saw you but you were a machine. Like—

Marlene: When...

Marlene: Wait, you were about to say something.

Carter: Just now?

Marlene: No... before I woke up. You said something about the nightmare. Do you remember?

He takes a moment to recall. His hands squeeze a little more out of nervousness. His head shakes to stay focused, if to snap out of the constant bliss for a moment.

Carter: Oh. I do now. Well, I was--

Carter: I was about to say ... I think the nightmare ... was me.

Marlene: What do you mean?

Carter: You said you were here once before we met. But the same happened to me as well. Only ... I did sense someone. I think it may have been you. I reached out--and she tried to fight me off. I wanted to calm her down and let her know I wasn’t going to hurt her. Before I could see her face she was gone. And the dream ended instantly there as well.

Marlene: Why haven’t you told me?

Carter: Once I realized that, I thought you’d be scared of me; I didn’t mean it! I was nervous. I didn’t think we’d end up together again.

Carter: But... we did. And here we are... again.
No. 1065070 ID: 273c18

I see. Yes, that matches what the visions looked like. Except, last time, when you woke up, it looked like he got shot in the back of the head by some kind of bolt. That would explain why he immediately... let's say, lost connection. It also means that whatever's happening in that cybernetic body horror reality, those in charge don't want you two to be fully aware of eachother, and also they have a means of fully repairing the damage incurred from the security measures. Or maybe that wasn't a damaging blow at all? Like a sort of stun rod? It was hard to see.

I'm not sure what we can do about this. I suppose we could try something new tonight, and open HIS eyes, while you keep them closed... or nobody open them tonight at all. Regardless, we really do need to figure out some way of meeting up or at least communicating in the mundane world.

A long term plan might be to nudge this orange trance into just barely enough awareness of the "outside" to investigate our situation without waking up enough to cause panic or engage security measures. Like, during the first dream you became aware of struggling against something before you opened your eyes. That state is the target- awareness without alertness. We could call it "one eye open"?
No. 1065072 ID: ee97bf


Yea, can we try some sort of slow waking up without panicking to the robot realm? Sorta covert-like, maybe only opening one eye for a bit, slowly getting a look around, moving like we're still asleep and twitching to get close enough to whisper. I feel like we'll get some clues to what's going on there. Also, want to swap phone numbers for the mundane world? And no hard feelings if we're making weird dreams for each other, as long as we cooperate to find the truth, yea? It's not like we're trying to cut ourselves or others off from any reality, so there's no culpability or anything.
No. 1065074 ID: 8f9bc4

Marlene hug Carter
No. 1065076 ID: b1805a


It sounds like this place enhances and amplifies our emotional experiences. Everything feels so much more intense and real -- bliss or contentment, anxiety or terror -- and right now, it seems that trying to do anything forceful (like Carter's attempts to console us turning into a nightmare) can have profound and unexpected consequences. Maybe it wasn't opening our eyes that did it, but our fear that this was all an illusion that created it a second time.

If so ... where do the boundaries lie, and can we learn to control them?

If we keep arriving here with Carter, can we use that in some way? He feels as real as we are, and even with our eyes shut we can see one another. There has to be some way to find each other.
No. 1065097 ID: ee97bf


So what emotions would be optimal to encourage the most useful response? A mix of acceptance, hope, and mild curiosity?
No. 1065132 ID: 15a025

Maybe happiness and excitement
No. 1065156 ID: 96715b


Perhaps more mild versions so any amplification doesn't make you manic?
No. 1065302 ID: 11f77a
File 168616880141.png - (178.70KB , 550x500 , 069.png )

To think I’d be more surprised, yet I’m easy to accept his confession. It does make sense about the first encounter I had. I meld into a gentle hug--I don’t know if it was to console him or because hugging feels good.

Marlene: That does change a few things ... not in a bad way. I’m just confused if the nightmarish visions depend on what I see rather than what I feel.

Marlene: We have to find out more. I need to know what you see!

Carter: You ... you just apologized for pressuring me...

Marlene: Dammit. I know. I know. I just... want to know what’s going on here! We have to find out the purpose of this place!

Carter: Maybe I won’t need to open them.

Marlene: Why not?

Carter: I just don’t see the point in it. Let’s say I do open my eyes and I do see you as a machine. We’d immediately wake up and have to do this all over again.

Carter: I’m just gonna assume the same will happen with me.

>Can we try some sort of slow waking up without panicking to the robot realm?
>It seems that trying to do anything forceful can have profound and unexpected consequences.
There’s a lot less restraint to express my feelings for sure. It could be that our fear of the unknown brings about the illusion, and we see what we expect to see. I don’t know if I’d be capable of pretending happiness when I open my eyes. It’s not just fear alone that makes me think it’s a bad idea. It’s also laziness, and how heavy my eyelids feel, or not even trying to acknowledge it as a problem. But the thought to force it also makes me feel how pointless it’ll be.

Marlene: So, what? Are we to just drift around like ... a bunch of Eloi? Euphoria in purely existing?

Carter: Maybe. You’re bothered to think someone’s behind all this.

Carter: But it has me wondering whoever’s behind this can’t possibly be malicious.

Marlene: And how would you figure that?

Carter: Being put into a sea of bliss is probably one of the most humane things that can happen for, uh, ‘subjects’. As for our people? Caprine-kind? We slaughter animals in dirty pens, torture rats and record their responses--

Carter: If there was a creator ... they’ve gone through amazing efforts to construct such a pleasant limbo!
No. 1065303 ID: 11f77a
File 168616887348.png - (173.38KB , 550x500 , 070.png )

Carter: But ... it could be nothing at all, maybe it’s a new phenomenon.

Carter: I mean, if we keep meeting like this--there has to be a reason we were chosen!

Carter: So maybe we ought to just ... let it be? We could talk. I know it takes effort to think beyond what’s immediately on our minds. But we could get to know each other. This is beyond pen pals!

Carter: You could share something. I could share something.

Carter: Like uh--

Carter: Uhm.

Carter: Red!

Marlene: Red?

Carter: Red..is my..favorite color? I think? Yeah.

Carter: We could take it one fun fact at a time.

Marlene: Heh, sure...

>Also want to swap numbers [?]
>We really do need to figure out some way of meeting up or at least communicating in the mundane world.
Marlene: I was, uhm, at Brook’s Clove today.

Carter: Oh, right. I’m sorry I--

Marlene: I mean ... I was going to be there anyway but I guess you couldn’t come over.

Carter: Yeah. Not--definitely not today.

Marlene: It’s fine. I spent my day reading terrible scripts for chump change. Then visited my friends at band practice--and got laid. Not by the band, that was--

Marlene: --I don’t know why I shared that so openly. A bit TMI.

He scoffs a laugh.

Carter: So you have a boyfriend? Or girlfriend--not that I would assume.

Marlene: Yeah. A boyfriend. Four years.

A slight pause.

Marlene: Were you up to anything?

Carter: Not much. I remember biking for a bit, thinking about this place all day. I prefer biking over driving. Not that I can travel far from home.

Marlene: Hey, if we are real people in the mundane world then perhaps we could share numbers.

Carter: Oh, I guess that could work...

Marlene: Is that alright? Are you going to tell me you don’t have a phone?

Carter: I do. Maybe I just want to see where this goes first. I dunno, I guess it’s like meeting someone from the internet. Yet--would this count as being in-person already? Where exactly are we? Are our bodies here or lying in bed a million miles away?
No. 1065304 ID: e5709d

>Whoever created this place can't possibly be malicious.
I don't think they meant to create this place for its own sake. It just occurred as the logical conclusion of focus testing and the after-effects of test subjects imposing what little will they had to ease their nightmares.
More importantly, if the subjects are contributing to something horrifying, then keeping them complacent and calm will prevent them from revolting. Classic paradox of Heaven: if paradise is where everyone who loves to help others ends up, then why are they stuck in a world that is cut off from the people who need the most help? Hell, are they actually hurting people without realizing they've been used?

>Yeah. Not--definitely not today.
"The internet is a powerful tool. Eighth wonder of the world. Which... which unlucky Carter were you?"

>Averse to sharing phone numbers
"Concentrate. No excuses for not sharing public information that all the big corporations memorized in an archive already."
No. 1065322 ID: dee951

A treacherous part of you really wants to know what sex would feel like here. That'd be cheating though. And you might be able to get pregnant in this realm. But part of you still wants to know.
No. 1065329 ID: 273c18

No way of knowing, not without having more sensory input than the bliss haze, but there doesn't seem to be any communication lag. Little to no latency means close distance.

Tell him about your band, your friends.
No. 1065337 ID: 8f9bc4

Tell him how you've been stuck in a rut for years, and you don't know why. You love writing but you can't find any inspiration in your life anymore. You hadn't even been out of the house for a week before before this dream that isn't a dream shook you up. That... might be why you're here.
No. 1065583 ID: 15a025

Hm, well. If sharing phone numbers might be too personal for now. How about chatting up sometime online?
No. 1065855 ID: 11f77a
File 168677474242.png - (173.09KB , 550x500 , 071.png )

>A treacherous part of you really wants to know what sex would feel like here.
Trust me, I’ve wondered that. I don’t know how I’d feel about it at this moment. Am I satiated after the romp with Sebastian? The dream keeps me joyful.

>Keeping [subjects] complacent and calm will prevent them from revolting.
I guess... but I don’t think I have much of a choice but to move along this euphoric current for now. I try to answer him my thoughts.

Marlene: Well, perhaps we’re real close to our bodies. There doesn’t seem to be any latency in our communication.

Carter: Look-at-you, always finding the logic in things~

Marlene: Oh, you think you have a good bead on me already?

Carter: Don’t you ever find beauty in mystery? Heh-heh.

Carter: So what do you even do, Marlene?

Marlene: Tis’ a mystery. Hmm~?

Carter: Than by my logic you must work with computers.

Marlene: Nooo. I-- I don’t really have a job right now. Or I’m trying. I want to be a writer. Or I am a writer. Yeah.

Carter: Ah, you were reading movie scripts not javascripts. Anything good?

Marlene: Mmm-no. Maybe. I’m reading them for a friend. Most of them are trash.

Marlene: I’ve been stuck in a rut for about a year and I don’t know why. Not even thirty and it feels like my life has come at a stand-still, like it’s as far as I’ll ever get. It used to be easy to write. Perhaps my old job has given me a depressing taste of how the real world works. It was... stressful.
No. 1065856 ID: 11f77a
File 168677482415.png - (130.56KB , 550x500 , 072.png )

Marlene: But since the first dream, things have been getting better. I’ve been acting strangely, too. I would see or do things that I normally wouldn’t--or be unable to realize before it’s too late.

Marlene: Has it been happening to you? Have you seen visions of this world when you... remember something nostalgic or hear a certain harmony? Or acted differently than you would?

He ponders for a bit, but he’s nodding.

Carter: I believe so, now that I think about it. Behaviorally, at least.

Carter: I talked back at my mother; it was over a small thing too. I mean, I didn’t yell--but it was clear enough was enough. It’s so dumb because it’s such a minor thing.

Marlene: What was it?

Carter: Meatloaf. Never liked it as a kid, don’t like it now. But every time she’ll convince me to eat it because I may have grown out of it.

Carter: Anyway, I politely decline as usual. But of course she has to bring those stupid questions up. “What if you were stuck on an island with only meatloaf to eat? What if your future girlfriend cooks you meatloaf for dinner?” It’s always one of those. Pointless rhetorical shit.

Carter: I just went on a tangent, is all. It shut her up. But I wondered if that was really me or some kind of outside element.

Marlene: She probably didn’t mean to upset you.

Carter: No. She’s always like that. The slightest defiance and she absolutely must win. And what’s worse is she’s subtle about it. It’s almost a mind game. Every conversation there’s a winner and a loser. It’s not traumatic but stretched over years and years you get tired of that strategy.

Carter: Great, now listen to me. On a tangent again over nothing.

Carter: I know one thing; I wished I was back here. I was worried you may not have returned.
No. 1065859 ID: b1805a


Maybe ... maybe that's the point. Maybe being here, wherever here is, is supposed to help us move past things.

For us and Marlene, it's getting back her inspiration, being able to write again, finding a path forward.

For Carter, it seems like ... finding the means to direct his own life, have a sense of agency and independence?
No. 1065869 ID: 8f9bc4

Are you two alone, or is there anything else in here with you? Even something distant, faint, or large?
No. 1066042 ID: 11f77a
File 168697290457.png - (136.32KB , 550x500 , 073.png )

>Are you two alone, or is there anything else in here with you?
I look towards the orange void and feel infinitely small compared to a red giant. I look up at the tethers and see no end. I sense many directions at once as my proprioception expands far. Perhaps I can describe it as seeing myself in the third- second- and first-person at once. It’s only now when I notice it, like manually breathing.

Nothing. Nothing but each other and ambient noise around us.

Marlene: Thank you, Carter. I have a feeling we may be seeing each other for a while.

Marlene: I don’t know why you and I were chosen... but I’ve been trying to make sense about why we’re here.

Marlene: Maybe this place is supposed to help us in the real world.

Carter: A new theory? Well you are the creative type~

Marlene: Just hear me out. Sure we can chill and drift forever, and bask in this wonderful euphoria. But this could be some metaphorical limbo to get past what holds us down.

Carter: If this is some roundabout way of accepting meatloaf into my life...

Marlene: No, Carter! It’s not like that at all~

Carter: I’m kiiidding.

Marlene: I was depressed for years, even through high school. Writing was my only distraction at the time--but once I lost that drive--perhaps this place is a means for me to get on the right path again.

Marlene: Is something holding you back, Carter? Something you’ve lost on the way?

Carter: Uhm--I’m not sure...

Marlene: A sense of agency? Or independence?

Carter: Quite the guess after one anecdote with my mom. Living at home aint so bad I reckon.

Carter: Though this place is a well-deserved break sometimes...
No. 1066043 ID: 11f77a
File 168697298681.png - (161.89KB , 550x500 , 074.png )

He moves on to something else.

Carter: So tell me about your band. Are you famous?

Marlene: Hell no. But-- we're gonna try to join a local event called, uh, ‘May 4 Two’ or some shit. It’s happening a month from now so I’ve taken the task of writing a song or two.

Carter: Man, that’s so cool. Do you sing?

Marlene: Oooh no. Noooo no I can’t sing. Or it’s passable but I’m going to let the two idiots do that. Maybe I’ll push a few keys but that’s it.

Carter: You sound wonderful just talking to me.

Marlene: Huh, you know I just noticed this--I feel like I’m talking just low enough to myself, but you can still hear me from all the way there right?

Carter: Hey, yeah. You’re right!

Carter: Can you hear me now?

Marlene: Yes. Hehehe. You have a nice voice too, by-the-way.

Carter: What’s your band called?

Marlene: Oh! The Mnemonic Gaps. Yeah I don’t know where they come up with that stuff.

Carter: It’s clever. Written anything so far?

Marlene: Ooooh... I’ve written some weird run-on paragraph of this place. It’s a bunch of gibberish but if I could pick out the best words maybe I can form a single poetic line for a 7-minute song.

Carter: That’d be so cool. I could try to help.

Carter: Man, can you imagine being able to... work in your sleep? You can get your shit together in here.
No. 1066049 ID: 77626a

...shit, we should try that. Let's try it! Write something!
No. 1066060 ID: 8f9bc4

It's probably the tethers; you're in contact through them somehow.

Writing might be hard to do here, but you can tell Carter about something you'd like to write, or think of what idea really inspires you.
No. 1066062 ID: e5709d

Have your songs transition between nirvana and cyberpunk hell, because that's apparently the theme of this place and you should write to reflect that.
No. 1066076 ID: 273c18

ehh maybe it's best not to dwell on the nightmare that probably doesn't fairly represent the hypothetical alternate reality that contains the dream. The dream might simply be a psychic connection between two people, with nothing else related to it.

Maybe we could focus on the theme of connections between people...
No. 1066146 ID: 15a025

Might be hard to write without a pencil. You could try telling Carter a story though! Make it up as you go along.
No. 1066337 ID: 11f77a
File 168723306829.png - (209.14KB , 550x500 , 075.png )

>You could try telling Carter a story
>Maybe we could focus on the theme of connections between people
>Writing might be hard to do here, but you can tell Carter about something you’d like to write.
> Have your songs transition between nirvana and cyberpunk hell […] you should write to reflect that.
Marlene: Huh. Maybe that’s one good use for this place. I don’t know how much longer we’ll have tonight but I may as well start on something.

Marlene: Like that song.

Marlene: But I don’t have a pencil so... this will be a testament to my memory when I wake up.

Carter: If you forget, the lyrics weren’t worth remembering~ What I always say.

Marlene: Eh, I’ve got a journal in my nightstand. If I sleepwalk again I just need to quickly jog over.

Marlene: Now let’s see...

It might be a bit difficult to ponder hard about this--but there are words and phrases I remember fading in and out of my head. Sometimes words are just sounds that feel nice on my tongue--that feel nice to the ears. No need to think of the words before or after.

>Select three, or your favorites
>You can swap or replace words
1)...turn my head into beautiful sound...
2)...we can fall for a million days...
3)...it’s just the company of absence now...
4)...can we feel the way that we used to...
5)...out of my peripheral, an ambient cloud...
6)...drifting between pluto and calliope...
7)...bask in the sun-stained grass field...
8)...whisper me a little seed...
9)...but you can’t take it with you...
10)...from the sky blooms a great noise...
11) [ free style >___ ]
No. 1066341 ID: 273c18

6, 8, 1
No. 1066369 ID: 15a025

No. 1066384 ID: 8f9bc4

No. 1066385 ID: 273c18


whisper me a little seed
turn my head into beautiful sound
bloom a great noise into the sky
to echo between pluto and calliope
No. 1066387 ID: e5709d

* screaming of yesteryear
* compressing god in a ball
* the highest is broken the lowest to be broken
No. 1066543 ID: 11f77a
File 168765522431.png - (201.41KB , 550x500 , 076.png )

>...turn my head into beautiful sound...
>...drifting between pluto and calliope...
>...whisper me a little seed...
>...from the sky blooms a great noise...
Yes, I think these will do; they seem to stick inside my head the most. I’ll manage to work on them in the real world--least if I make the effort to concentrate on remembering.

Marlene: What do you think?

Carter: I don’t think I’d be able to describe it any better. You’re onto something, I know it. I’ll keep an ear out for the radio when the song is finished~

Marlene: Which is better; bloom a great noise into the sky, or from the sky blooms a great noise?

Carter: Are you telling people to bloom or describing the sky blooming over them?

Marlene: I guess I’ll figure that part out later.

Carter: So your song is going to be about this place? Will people understand it? Could they ever feel like we do right now?

Marlene: For once it gives me inspiration to write. It’s very real to us. I know it’s a dream, but I’m also fully aware--

Carter: Like a lucid dream.

Marlene: But it’s not! It’s like... I can’t manipulate this place like a lucid dream. There’s a haze of forgetfulness when you’re in a dream and it’s only when you wake up would you realize what had happened.

Marlene: But here I feel no haze. My mind, albeit my emotions are heightened, is still clear to me.

Carter: It kind of makes--
No. 1066544 ID: 11f77a
File 168765523937.png - (52.73KB , 550x500 , 077a.png )

No. 1066545 ID: 11f77a
File 168765525757.png - (105.13KB , 550x500 , 077b.png )

No. 1066546 ID: 15a025

Wake up, shows over. You're sleep walking outside, and not outside your home either it seems?
No. 1066547 ID: e51896

Wake up
begin thrilling stealth mission: try to get home without being seen.
No. 1066549 ID: 0fb2b3

Do you recognize your surroundings?
No. 1066550 ID: 273c18

Where are you?
No. 1066554 ID: 8f9bc4

Oh no you went sleepwalking naked, right in front of that very well lit gas station, and the casino with all those neon lights, both of which the camera is conveniently facing away from right now, and the bar that's just finished happy hour with all the raucous patrons leaving at once, and oh no here comes the parade! Oh no it's the mayor! She's giving you a surprise pop quiz, right in front of your high school crush!
No. 1066558 ID: a758c7

Uh oh, goat in the buff
No. 1066711 ID: 11f77a
File 168790724064.png - (119.30KB , 550x500 , 078.png )

It... it feels a little nippy. Cold all’a sudden. Everything went dark.

>Wake up, shows over.
>[...] Oh no it’s the mayor! She’s giving you a surprise pop quiz right in front of your high school crush!
Ugh, huh? What? What’s going on here--was I just--
No. 1066712 ID: 11f77a
File 168790731315.png - (123.58KB , 550x500 , 079.png )

>Where are you?
>Do you recognize your surroundings?
>You’re sleepwalking outside, and not outside your home either it seems?
GASP! What the fuck?! Oh shit! Where am I?!


I recognize this place. Fuck! I mean... good! It’s literally my street! What the fuck time is it?! Where’s my house?! How long was I out here?

I turn and see my porch directly behind me. The door is open a lil’. Oh thank fucking christ.
No. 1066713 ID: 11f77a
File 168790738769.png - (118.92KB , 550x500 , 080.png )

I rush back inside the apartment. My tits are freezing.

This isn’t good. I really hope no one saw me; I didn’t look around the neighborhood before I ran back in. I saw a little light in the sky. I wonder how damn early it is. Probably just about dawn.

Oh man. Oh god, what a rush. Brrrgh!

I gently close the door as quickly as I can.

Seb’s in bed it seems, undisturbed.
No. 1066716 ID: e51896

That must have felt a bit... exciting, didnt it? Maybe rub one off after that experience before you go back to sleep, and get dressed in your pajamas

Note to self: get dressed before going to sleep from now on... unless maybe... do you want to potentially go through that experience again? I mean, youll have the excuse that you were literally sleepwalking, and that experience probably did felt heartpoundingly fun and unique
No. 1066719 ID: a758c7

get in bed and cuddle up to Seb so you can warm up
No. 1066720 ID: 273c18

Press your cold nipples to his back.
No. 1066721 ID: 322af8

Well if it was a good rush maybe you should try it again sometime. Otherwise just sneak back to bed and hold your man.
No. 1066723 ID: 1371b2

Pajamas might be a good idea.
Or unfortunately doing the cyber-nightmare unplugging to the dream again…
No. 1066724 ID: 0fb2b3

Hmmm. It might be more productive to try to get to the cyborg reality rather than going from the pleasant dream to the mundane reality, if this is what happens if you don't go for the middle step!
No. 1066816 ID: 8f9bc4

That one time you made yourself wake up, you were still sleepwalking though, and Seb found you in the closet. You don't know if the elysian pond is related, or if this is just a "you" thing. Might be good to ask Carter if he's been sleepwalking, next time.

At any rate the good news is even if someone saw you, you have an ironclad excuse. Can't help sleepwalking! It's a known fact that you get away with the most forbidden, tabboo acts in the world, and everyone will be perfectly fine with it, as long as you don't enjoy yourself.
No. 1066827 ID: 11f77a
File 168806359527.png - (145.65KB , 550x500 , 081.png )

>That must’ve felt a bit... exciting, didn’t it? Maybe rub one off
>Well if it was a good rush maybe you should try it again sometime.
Uh... I mean, well. Okay, listen.
As exciting as it may have been after running back in the house--usually that kind of experience is one to have planned beforehand. Rubbing one out isn’t really the kind of response I’d have right now...

>[...] doing the cyber-nightmare unplugging to the dream again
>It might be more productive to try to get to the cyborg reality rather than going from the pleasant dream to the mundane.
I don’t really want to shock myself awake--I may have ended in the street either way. But Carter was saying something before we were both cut off. I wonder what kicked us out of the dream if we hadn’t opened our eyes this time.
I’ve sleepwalked three times now. First was in a closet, then the couch, now it’s made me venture past my porch. I’m gonna have to take some precautions next time I sleep. I guess I’ll remember to wear pajamas.

My nips are sensitive to the touch but they’re quite chilled.

I notice it’s 5:12 in the morning. While I’m not as tired, I can snooze a bit longer. Not that I have a job. I lock my door. I don’t recall locking it yesterday; it slips our minds sometimes.

I carefully rejoin my boyfriend in bed. I try to sneak close to his toasty body. It rouses him to grunt.

Seb: Hmm? Hun? You feel... very cold--

Marlene: Shh. Say nothing or my cold hands will grab your balls.

Hmmmgh~ man that feels better...

Just like that~

No. 1066828 ID: 11f77a
File 168806362449.png - (151.25KB , 550x500 , 082.png )


Shit--who turned on the sun? It’s too bright through the window. My eyes; ow. Morning hurts.

Guess I didn’t return to the dream. Harrumph.

The television is on; news at a low volume. Seb’s not in bed. I think I hear him using the bathroom. Running sink water. Guh... what time is it now? 6:17?
No. 1066834 ID: 273c18

No. 1066837 ID: 791bcd

Dont forget to write down what you dreamt:
>...turn my head into beautiful sound...
>...drifting between pluto and calliope...
>...whisper me a little seed...
>...from the sky blooms a great noise...
No. 1066841 ID: 8f9bc4

It's 11:30. You've been asleep for three days.
No. 1066857 ID: e51896

whats going on on the news?
No. 1066943 ID: 15a025

Agreed. Get that pen and paper going Marley.
No. 1066980 ID: 11f77a
File 168834764433.png - (168.18KB , 550x500 , 083.png )

>Get that pen and paper going, Marley
>Don’t forget to write down what you dreamt
Yeah, yeah. I can still remember ‘em. Let me juss’ find my journal.
How come my eyes are so tired right now? I was fine an hour ago. I didn’t dream anything; it felt like a blink.

>what’s going on in the news?
My eyes adjust to the light. I put a robe on and check what’s playing on the news. Something about a rubber duck race happening later down a canal. It’s one of those market festivities.
No. 1066981 ID: 11f77a
File 168834767088.png - (151.77KB , 550x500 , 084.png )

By the time I’m finished writing down my notes Seb comes walking out of the bathroom. He has a script in his hands.

Seb: Oh hey, you’re up!

Seb: I uh... I was reading a bit in there. Some of these scripts are kinda bad. But you probably knew that.

Seb: I actually found a script under the couch while I was looking for my boots. I dunno if you’ve read it yet. I’ve put it on the coffee table there.

Marlene: Oh! Thank you. It’s not one of my old ones lost months ago is it?

Seb: Nah. It’s something about a... calliope thing? I forget the title--I only glimpsed at it.

Seb: Say, is everything alright?

Marlene: Yeah I’m fine. Why?

Seb: Jus’ wondering. Was thinking maybe the AC broke again or something. You felt a little chilly. But if it’s nothing then it’s nothing.

Seb: Anyway, work begins in a bit. Weekend is finally approaching. Don’t stress your brain too hard today. One of those scripts ought to make that $100.
No. 1066985 ID: 273c18

Read that calliope thing. That's a name that showed up in your lyrics too.
No. 1067000 ID: e5709d

>Calliope Script
Y'know, that might explain the dreams... but not the knowledge of Carter.
Read. Now.

And read more scripts.
* Bun in the Closet - A closeted lesbian is in a miserable relationship with a guy to hide her sexuality, gets raped by something (either a supernatural creature or she deluded herself from trauma), and is now pregnant.
* Hyper: Extra-Censored Edition - A sex comedy where everything manages to barely reach an R-rating by showing massive bulges, suggestive imagery, and clothed ongoing orgasms. For instance, there's a scene where a hermaphrodite housewife accidentally eats a testosterone pill while playfully wearing her scientist husband's experimental spandex spacesuit meant for astronauts to explore the sun, and then her bulge grows to the literal size of a mountain while it's still covered in NASA spacegear. All of this doesn't use CGI censoring but simple extra-clothing, which extenuates the hilarity.
* xkcd: The Movie - A stick figure movie made of unpublished comics from the late Ramdal Onerow himself, according to his last will and testament they are to be directly scanned and then modded beyond recognition with the latest video editing software to make a full 3D AAA-quality movie in whatever way the director desires. (In this universe, the author of xkcd died in an accident or something and then it turns out for every comic he published, he kept one in secret.)
No. 1067012 ID: a758c7

also be sure to hug and smooch your boyfriend~
No. 1067037 ID: 11f77a
File 168844272964.png - (183.64KB , 550x500 , 085.png )

Marlene: Yeah I’ll be alright. I’ll likely choose... the Saturn one. Or Countdown to Darkness. I might visit Silenus, might not--who knows. Maybe I'll be naked all day inside the apartment and watch tv.

Seb: Ya know, I've been havin' a little cough lately. I ought to call-in.

He slips beside me for a kiss.

Seb: Alas, bills are waiting for me. I’ll see you later. Have a good day~


Marlene: You too~ Make your money.
No. 1067038 ID: 11f77a
File 168844284852.png - (115.76KB , 550x500 , 086.png )

>y’know, that might explain the dreams [...] Read. Now.
>read that calliope thing. That’s a name that showed up in your lyrics too.
I’m quite curious to know as well. There seems to be a lot of coincidental things happening. Soon as my boyfriend heads out the door I read the script.

Hrmm. Jason in the Kaleidoscope. Sci-Fi Drama. By Osman Neiro. Don’t know how I missed this one. Growing into adulthood, a boy experiences parallels of his life which only he is aware.

Multiverse here we go; it’s what’s popular right now. It seems like Seb misremembered the word ‘kaleidoscope’. Although, both ‘kaleidoscope’ and ‘calliope’ originate from the same Greek word ‘kalos’ meaning beauty.

How do I know that? I just looked it up on my phone.

No. 1067039 ID: 11f77a
File 168844287495.png - (92.06KB , 550x500 , 087.png )

Marlene: Huh...

No. 1067041 ID: 11f77a
File 168844291328.png - (65.53KB , 550x500 , 088.png )


No. 1067067 ID: 8f9bc4

I think we have a winner...
No. 1068917 ID: c4110d

Chapter 3: https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/1068906.html
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