Thursday, November 24, 2011

Riding with Nick Dwyer -/|\- Hope is Dead, Long Live Hope, (Somebody Set Them Up The Bomb)

Riding With Nick Dwyer

In that picture, I'm definitely the cat. He insist that I use one of those, giving me some nonsense about psychological warfare. I think it's a pointless gesture, but I will respect his opinion in this matter.

After he pulled me out of that hole in the ground, we rolled along in his car for a few miles without a word. We both just glanced at each other now and then, with no idea what to say.

You need to remember, I remember him as a weird, almost mechanical thing that I engaged in battles to the death with as some kind of Demon Samurai. Simply by conversing with each other, we "won the internet" by virtue of existing. Even after we came to this world in our respective fashions, war was what we knew.

You know what? I'm saving our conversation in the car for later. We didn't talk about anything particularly important.

That said, Nick wants to talk about Hope.



Hope is Dead, Long Live Hope, Somebody Set Them Up The Bomb

Two days of preparation, three cans of black paint, about five hundred dollars in miscellaneous small items (Tongue of Dog and Wing of Bat are out of season after all), and a whole lot of annoyed Sage and Ellen had lead to this moment.

She and I, sitting with the rest of the Hope-goers for a final lunch. The ill-fated Johnsons and that Ray guy among others. (did NOT get a chance to talk with him. Ah well.) Steele was present, Rivers was present (I should have talked to him too), Elliot was there with his pal Alex... damn it, I have to put another quarter in my Ellipses jar. Honestly, I didn't know a lot of the people there, and I didn't have time to talk to them either. I don't know the names of the dead. That worries the shit out of me. Shouldn't I be able to remember them? If we don't, who will?
I had finished drawing a little something in the same concoction I'd prepared around Hope for the last two days on the table we were eating on. I wasn't taking any chances. The attack could come at any time, and I didn't want to leave anyone in the lurch.

Ellen and I, sitting around these people, eating and chatting a little, having a good time. It didn't last very long. Ellen was curious, she'd never met anyone besides me who'd been "stalked" before. So when reality twisted and the first bodies hit the floor, I popped out a cigarette lighter I'd purchased for this moment, lit it, and threw it on the table. 

Ellen was a demon. She knows other demons. Stage one of this little fracas was to put us in a position where we could drop a whole mess of hell-hounds on Slendouche. Now, so you all know, proper Hell-Hounds are pack hunters. They're vicious. They come in large groups with flaming red eyes, an affinity for the hot stuff, and a tendency to breathe fire at people. And Ellen's Hell-hounds have tentacles. By all the gods, does EVERYTHING have to have tentacles these days? I suppose they're the new fashion accessory for the inhuman and murderous. 

At least that was the first part of the plan for keeping everyone safe for long enough to get them out of there. That's about the point when everything went to shit. The world changed, and suddenly that circle I'd set up on the table was aimed to ricochet off the wall, and summon those hounds in such a direction that they would literally warp into our reality from an angle that would involve exploding through my body.

There is exactly one reason I'm alive right now, and that's because Ellen is the fastest goddamn woman alive. Suddenly, I find myself being shoved away from the table, away from the terrified citizens of Hope, and away from the IT. through the doorway. The universe shifted, and when Ellen and I blinked, we were suddenly at the main entrance door to Hope, outside the house.

Ellen immediately blurted out, "What the fuck was that...there was nothing there! I couldn't see anything! And then...Christ Nick, it killed those two like they were made of tissue!"

I hadn't noticed. I was too busy trying to sucker-punch it with Hell Hounds, and then try to redirect said Hell Hounds from exploding through my body on the way to their target. And then I realized that somehow, Ellen COULDN'T see IT. But that wasn't our problem right now. Our problem was the fact that the house was shifting. It was no longer a single, stable physical location. The house had gone Eldritch, and going out the window could take you to the roof, the basement door could lead to the bathroom, and the bathroom door could lead you to the lunchroom. Everything was fucked. The people in Hope were going to get massacred at IT'S leisure. Well we couldn't have that, now could we?

Your turn, Ellen.

To understand the psychology of Nick Dwyer, one must first understand that he spent a lot of time watching Looney Tunes cartoons as a child. That is my only guess on the matter. What I know for sure is that at that moment he just wrote about, two of my loyal hounds arrived just behind us. They'd not ended up where they were supposed to be. And that was when Nick had them tear the door off it's hinges. He then dropped it lengthwise across their backs, and leaped on top. There is only one reason he wasn't instantly eaten alive, and that I think was the confusion of my brethren. No one had ever tried anything like that before, so they did not know how to go about destroying him for the insult yet. Rather than let them figure that out, I leaped on the door with him.

Nick shouted, "Keep the dimension's stable! We need to actually go straight!"

I did my best. It made sense. As one solid object, our small group had a far greater chance of maintaining cohesion and sticking together as we moved through the warped and twisted floors of hope.

What did not make sense, was him repeatedly shouting, "YAH MULE! YAH! YAH! YAH MULE! YAH!"

The Hell-hounds kept running. I think I heard one of them mutter about devouring his undoubtedly delicious spleen.
To avert this, I told Nick, "Stop demeaning them."

They slipped. I do not begrudge my comrades this. The door we were on fell off the bodies of the Hell Hounds as they charged into a broom closet. Based on my understanding of the flow of dimensions, that would take them back through a confusing chain or rooms that would eventually lead to the "Slender Man", dropping both of us to the floor.

Nick brushes off his clothes calmly as I got my bearings. I had my sword out from under my coat, and my hands were shaking. What was this madness? This was no war that I had ever known.

Nick says, "First priority! You grab Elaine I...need to go make this mess even MESSIER! And maybe hold the house intact so that everyone can actually get out of here the direct route."

I paused for a moment, feeling the world around us normalize as Nick started chanting something. He pulled out his new staff, and started stumbling around in an awkward circle. He was going to give them a way out, one way or the other.

Meanwhile, I had to get everyone out as best as I could, as fast as I could. I dived into a closet...taking me back to where Elaine and the others were. This is what happens when time and space get screwy. The door that takes you in one direction may actually take you somewhere else. Nick was maintaining a normal path to the door, but anyone who decided to take a detour would be in serious trouble if they didn't have the kind of senses he and I played around with.

The moment I arrived where we had been having a peaceful lunch previously, I saw Elaine get flung against the wall by thin air. I could feel the presence of this "Slender Man" there, but I could see nothing. Two people died instantly after that.

And that's when the Hell Hounds arrived, leaping onto his tentacles and biting down, hard.

I could feel the anger of all the beasts in that room surging through my skull. I started shoving people at the door. I tried to focus my energy and put some kind of barrier between it and them. I don't know if it worked. What I do know is that everyone I shoved out that door managed to make it to one of those cars from the regular walk that Nick had set up for them.

And after that, I insist, is Nick's story to tell.


I watched a redheaded gent pour gasoline on the grand piano. Fire was filling the house, exactly according to my plan. Everything else had gone cockeyed, but THAT had remained unaffected. I watched the flames lick the gasoline, and set the entire thing ablaze. I had spent two days preparing this trap. I wanted to appreciate it.

He saw me, and his green eyes sparkled. He was enjoying his work. I knew who this guy was, based on all the information I've put together recently: Writer.

Of all the things he could have expected however, me dressed as Sherlock Holmes, complete with the oddly checkered hat and overcoat, was probably not one of them. I held up a magnifying glass, and shouted at Writer:

"ELEMENTARY, my dear Writer! Just remember: Fire is the devil's only friend, as the old song goes!"

How I ended up here, dressed as Sherlock Holmes during all of this, is a tale for another time.

Writer chuckled in response. "And this is indeed the day the music dies! I advise you to stay out of the sitting room, mon bon d├ętective. The one with the piano. Unless you want to be knocked right off your feet!"
I slowly ambled in Writer's direction, twirling the magnifying glass in one hand, "Well... No angel born in hell, could break that Satan's spell...but I have to ask. What have you got against Pianos? That was a lovely instrument, damn it."

Honest question. I'm a music lover, don't you know?

"Oh, but think of how well it will burn!" Writer returns, as if the thought should be obvious. "Thank of the chaos, think of the wonderful havoc it'll cause! Think of the strings breaking and flying across the room, lashing out and destroying whoever and whatever is unlucky enough to get in their way. Think of the wonderful crash the body will make when its legs give way! Marvelous, marvelous! I'd stay and watch the show, but I'm afraid this area is... eu, beyond my control, and thus I have no intention of remaining. You do enjoy yourself though, Nick."

I just smiled. It's not every day that I actually get to gloat at somebody.

I actually laughed, "Oh you pyros are all the same. I suppose I'm here for a very specific reason though. I just wanted to thank you guys. You see, Writer, the mystical significance of fire as a purifying force has existed in cultures throughout the ages. By the same token, I also knew that anyone who wanted to destroy Hope would comically enough, purge it with fire. Which is why me and Ellen were up all night painting out the place into one giant circle of power. Effectively, Writer, we turned Hope into one giant purifying, banishing bomb on crack. And you just pulled the trigger. Don't worry, it won't kill your sick and twisted boss. We'd need a MUCH bigger circle for that. Thin Guy will spend about a week in hell...and then he'll be back, and BOY will he be pissed. But you know what? Now our friends have time to run. And boy do I feel bad for the proxies who'll wonder where the piss your boss is. Some of them might even think normally for a while! Now, that said, I think we should make our escape, shouldn't we?"


And there was a moment there when Writer's grin widened further, and seemed to extend to both of his ears, twisting and curling and distorting, showing off a full set of... sharpened teeth? Even those bright eyes seemed to grin now. He seemed completely and utterly pleased, giggling madly under his breath.And then he began to clap.

"Good show, sir, good show!" He giggled. The grin gradually died down."I'll be taking my leave now. You know how it is; things to do, lives to ruin and whatnot. Au revoir, mon petit chou~"

And he was gone.

When I walked out of Hope, and I could vaguely see a tentacle reaching toward me as the fire reached a certain point in the house. Symbols all across Hope all fired off, and the fire burned bright white.That super hot flame engulfed the tentacle, and pulled it back into the dying house. Me and Ellen hit the Slender Man with the biggest fucking bomb the two of us could pull together with two days of work. It was designed to purify anything in it's area, and then launch whatever was left right into the bowels of hell, the home of those Hell Hounds.

Ellen and I have been driving ever since.

Don't get your hopes up, people. He'll be back. We didn't kill a damn thing with that. And something like the Slender Man can HANDLE getting out of hell. But I'm pretty sure this one hurt him. I'm pretty sure that a lot of people are going to get a good, solid breather. Best case scenario is what I gloated to Writer about. Wouldn't it be fantastic, if proxies that don't have his voice in their heads started thinking for themselves again? If it jarred his process enough that people randomly stop getting stalked? How about that for a curtain call on the sanctuary known as Hope.

More likely it'll only help one or two people, and there won't be any change in the lives of anyone who is currently stalked. But that's the point: we have to have hope.

For all the bad shit that happened at noon today, I can say that Hope lives on in all of us. And the legend continues.


  1. Intriguing. Well, I'll be on the lookout, see if this bomb of yours did what you claim. Doubt it.

  2. Good show, good show. Keep it up, I would like to see how you'll top this one!

  3. o.O;

    God damnit Amal, where are they hiding your wizard's school? I want Lessons.

  4. Fucking hell. A magical bomb?

  5. See, this is the way to do it! Bravo, good show, all the rest of that fun stuff. There's no time to mope around~

  6. No word since November, you guys still alive?

    I've heard of you in passing and just came here because someone reading my blog decided to compare me to you, without a code against killing. I'm only up to last March but so far I'm not seeing it.

  7. If this were a purifying bomb as you say, wouldn't it have affected ANYONE within its radius? You know, humans included?