Post-Jordanism: noun- The artistic (cultural?) movement which began in late 2011. Works within this deal with themes of existential crisis, identity crisis, posttraumatic stress disorder, the state of being broken, intrusive thoughts of (non)existent(?) memory, the morbid preoccupation with suicide, grief, uncontrollable emotion, and darkness as a simple abstract concept. ex. 1: "Kill me."

Friday, November 16, 2012

I Write Too Much

DCA: Seasons 1-6 (including both Halloween specials and DCA09): 200,000 words
DCA: The Green Journey: 200,000 words
Rapture first draft (up to August 19th): 186,000 words
Rapture: September 30th-October 3rd: 16,000 words

Now if only I could easily check the word count to Jordan Eats and to Topography Genera so far.
It's interesting to consider that the complete DCA is around 400,000 words, though. Shit, that's around War and Peace length for some translations. Not even the finished Rapture will be that long, according to my speculations. Oh well, I'm fine with Rapture being shorter; it's already considerably better. xD


Sunday, October 21, 2012



Stories concerning selkies are generally romantic tragedies. Sometimes the human will not know that their lover is a selkie, and wakes to find them gone. In other stories the human will hide the selkie's skin, thus preventing it from returning to its seal form. A selkie can only make contact with one human for a short amount of time before they must return to the sea. They are not able to make contact with that human again for seven years, unless the human is to steal their selkie's skin and hide it or burn it.


24-hour comic: SALMACIS, pages 7-12

Can you see my influence?
"I see too much."
You know too little.
Superior intellect.
"I am leaving now."

(Reads right-to-left)
You will be back.
All, always the same.
Everything the same.
Everything the same for the End of All Things.

I leave.

Living in FEAR all your life is better than living without.
Now wake up.
Let me show you to the Door.

EAT has something to say to me.

(Reads right-to-left)
The people you pass on the street are curious, filled with wonder and regret.
They don't like you.
Your only company are the birds, watching you worm your way into a more comfortable form of life.
It's only a matter of time. Why should they like you?
Enjoy the peaceful musings of daytime television, your last company existing primarily on CNN.
Enjoy this life of wonder and imagination, for it will be torn down. (Between the Buried and Me lyric)

Everyone is a Camper.

(Lots and lots and lots of prog lyrics)
We are everywhere.
You run from us, you run from all.

(Upside-down: I need a new plan.
Escape the rat maze, I must jump down the orchard of the ordinary.
When can I free my mind?
Where will my dichotomy falter?
When can I be open?)
(Left side of page: Her ink stains my hands.
It has been a long time since I last spoke of this issue.
I need a new plan.)
(Right side of page: Her temptations question my perseverance.
What will become of my time?
What will become of my ideas?
Will my eyes remain fixated on the waves of my childhood dreams?
I need a new plan.)
(Bottom: We need devotion. The sweet relief is a must. (Both Between the Buried and Me lyrics)

I begin to wonder what I must do.

24-hour comic: EAT, pages 3-6


I go into school and find a disturbing sight in the hallway.

The blaring yellow sphere...
Trapped in the secret empty city.
What world is this?
Am I awake?
Are you here to kill me?
Am I here to kill you?

You cannot progress.
I can.
"Then I will leave."
But I am your home.

Supper's ready, boy. Time to EAT.
85 85 85 85 85 85 85
I'm the Night

I meet Salmacis.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

24-Hour Comic: FAF/EAT/SALMACIS/ONO page two

"That's a fuckin' huge bird, Jesus."
A whole world awaits your passive judgement one cinderblock away.
Come inside if you wish to see red, white, and blue for who you truly are.

Turns out that bird stole my hat. Now it's time for me to go to school.

24-hour comics, part one

"I'm a bird wearin' a trilby, CA-CAW!"

Rappu introduced me to something called the 24-hour comic event, which apparently only happens once a year. During it, you draw a comic every hour for twenty four hours. ..so I'm trying that!

I decided to go with a conceptual series; rather than twenty-four individual comics, I'll be drawing twenty-four pages of a single comic. As you might be able to read on the page, this overall comic will be titled The Fabrication of an Art Form/Everyone's Awake Tonight/Someone's Always Lately Missing, A Comic In Space/Observation of the Night Owls, subtitled Enjoy A Twenty-four hour comic by Rael Fancyhat.

Eight guesses what this comic will be about, and the first five don't count.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

In Which I Attempt to Analyze The Parallax II: Future Sequence (Between the Buried and Me)

First of all, note that this is an outdated picture of the cover art; it's been changed from "Part 2" to simply "II," a decision I didn't like at first but have since warmed up to.

Between the Buried and Me are a.. well, they're a band. They make music. They happen to be my favourite band at the moment. This is because they are more than just a band; they're storytellers, rather surreal storytellers primed in the stream-of-consciousness prose-poetry hybrid they call lyrics. When they released The Parallax II, I was stoked to see what an album-wide story by these guys would end up like. The predecessor/first part to The Parallax, an EP labelled Hypersleep Dialogues, provided a rich look into the two protagonists of the story, simply referred to as "Prospect #1" and "Prospect #2." Now, rather than spend time analyzing the lyrics of Hypersleep Dialogues, I'll just link you to an incredibly handy and commendable two blog posts I read on Heavy Blog Is Heavy. Here's the first part, and here's the second. These two posts explain and make sense of the EP's story far more than I possibly could have, and I will be using this analysis as the basis for my own.

The key information to keep in mind, though, is that Prospect #1 is the protagonist from Between the Buried and Me's earlier song "Swim to the Moon," off of The Great Misdirect, and Prospect #2 is a character mentioned in the two-part song "Lost Perfection," off of The Silent Circus. In "Swim to the Moon," a businessman gets tired of his stressful daily life and goes off to the beach, lies on his back on the water, and floats off. The song details his thoughts during three days out at sea. "Lost Perfection" talks about the end of the world as brought on by three lovers (who happen to be expanded upon in "Prequel to the Sequel" off of Colors, where we're treated to an allegorical tale about how their world ends), Prospect #2 turning out to be one of these three characters.

And to sum up Hypersleep Dialogues, Prospect #1 finds land, sends a signal, and is found and taken back to civilization. Meanwhile, Prospect #2 sets out in a spaceship on a mission to start new life out in the stars, developing a Godlike complex at having survived the end of his world, and coming to terms with the fact that his world is gone.

So, then! Let's dive into Future Sequence. My information will be a mixture of the lyrics that came with the album, anything I can vaguely remember the band disclosing about the album, and speculation based on all kinds of things including the art that came in the album's liner notes.

"Goodbye to Everything"

I wonder if I'm alive
Breathe slowly
Open your eyes

Can you hear me?
Look at what's in front of you
An endless journey
Our end
What do you see?
What do you feel?
Were we ever really alive?
You know this is the right choice

Let's switch off together
Let's float to no more
Goodbye to everything

From what I have gathered in my research of this album, I at least know "Goodbye to Everything" serves as a sort of in medias res introduction; this actually takes place at the end of the story. The art accompanying the lyrics in the booklet consists of a spaceship flying through space.

My interpretation of this is that the first three lines are Prospect #1's inner monologue, while the rest is Prospect #2 speaking to him. By this point, both Prospects have ended pretty much everything and are floating off into space (or the sun, hard to tell).

"Astral Body"

Prospect 2:
Analyze my own matter from above
Blacked out eyes in an existence overgrown
Never fall back down
Trapped in myself

Sold my hands
Envy them
Can't find the one

I slowly start to cut pieces of flesh from my body
Dig in and dissect
Collecting examples of what the outside world sees
Under it all
I know the devastation I have caused
Upon myself and this world

Speak to me freely
I am listening

Accompanying art is that of Prospect #2 with a surreal disembodied hand touching him from above. And also a surreal disembodied eyeball looking at the hand. ..I think.

Right. So we've left the end of the story, yeah? Let's call this a direct continuation of Hypersleep Dialogues; Prospect #2 has just come to the cold realization that his world is forever gone. He doesn't seem to be taking it very well ("I know the devastation I have caused upon myself and this world"). The 'chorus' of the song ("Speak to me freely, I am listening"), I take to be an attempt at humility by subverting Prospect #2's "Lost Perfection" title of the man who talks too much. Here, he shows signs of wanting to change his ways.

Of course, there's a notable sci-fi element to this (aside from the whole "THE WORLD HAS ENDED AND YOU ARE IN A SPACESHIP" part, I mean) in that Prospect #2 has the ability to observe himself in a sort of out-of-body experience, his "astral body." In fact, I'm willing to bet he reaches his astral body by entering hypersleep, a vague subject mentioned in Hypersleep Dialogues. This would explain his "blacked out eyes." The line directly following that, "Never fall back down, trapped in myself," seems to suggest that he might be stuck in hypersleep.

What does Prospect #2 do with his astral body? Well, from the looks of it, he analyzes himself and cuts pieces from his body. My speculation is that he wants to see if there's some fundamental part of his body that makes him terrible in his eyes (it's worth mentioning that Between the Buried and Me songs do often deal with the less appealing aspects of human nature, so this would fit in with that).

"Lay Your Ghosts to Rest"

Prospect 2:
Under it all
A new world
A new world made with the hands of madness
These hands
They will always do the cutting
Piece by piece the pain gets worse
If only I could see myself right now

The gathering of flesh
Transforming my face into an unrecognizable state
Smooth out the eyes
Smooth out the lips
Every mirror is a past idea smashed upon recognition (These selfish reasons... the letter is all I have left for explaining)

Will it be found?
Will the right hands deliver?
The heartache I left

Cut until all that is left is new material
Day in, day out
Deep down I know what I must do

So much happens behind closed doors
So much happens behind our closed doors
This key will open them
Expose us all

Crusty-eyed symphony
Awakened by my grunts and moans
Why do I do this to myself?
I suppose the choice was all mine
God felt so much better before the mirror glimpse
On the surface I know what I must do

Folder 502:
The precaution documents
The failsafe way back "home"
Should I end it right here and now?
That would be far too selfish
I shall end what I've begun
The creation of more
More of us
The skin and bones of destruction
An army of weak souls
Weak minds
Weak life

(Written in a language I can understand. My brilliance seems questioned with these instructions. Fairly obvious for precaution documents I suppose. The "Night Owls" always send me back. Seems to be in their DNA.)
.fade out.

I wake to my own whimper
Ship is counting down
Must regroup myself

The end starts now

The accompanying art is a sort of ship diagnostic reading, and I quote,

12h 51m 26.282s +27(degrees) 07 42.01 [J2000] (192.859508, 27.128336)

17h 45m 37.224s -28(degrees) 56 10.23 [J2000] (266.405100, -28.936175)



So, where to begin analyzing all this. It seems like Prospect #2 has taken to cutting himself almost entirely, trying to make new humans using pieces of himself. ..maybe. Actually, no, let me tell you what my exact interpretation is.

"Folder 502" seems to be something Prospect #2 did not write, whatever it says. I'm betting it was written by the Night Owls, a cryptic race of aliens from The Great Misdirect's "Fossil Genera (A Feed From Cloud Mountain)." Considering they're mentioned by name in this song's lyrics, I don't think it's that farfetched. (It's worth mentioning that, in Hypersleep Dialogues, Prospect #2 frequently mentions a drive for "moving forward." At the end of "Fossil Genera," it's hinted that humanity's drive to keep moving on left it wide open to be taken over by the Night Owls.) If I had to guess, I'd say Folder 502 basically says "Fly into the black hole at the center of the galaxy. End it all, it's the only way to be sure." They're referred to as "precaution documents," after all.

So with that in mind, let's break down that particular lyrical segment.

Folder 502:
The precaution documents
The failsafe way back "home" (Considering Prospect #2's home is now silence and nothingness, this can probably be seen as a metaphor.)
Should I end it right here and now? (I take this as him asking if he should just stick with killing himself alone.)
That would be far too selfish (And then realizing that that only solves his problems rather than that of humanity's, which would be selfish.)
I shall end what I've begun (He had set out on a mission: Create new life.)
The creation of more
More of us (At first, I thought this could have meant, by "end what I've begun," seeing it through to the end. But then the next lines came in.)
The skin and bones of destruction
An army of weak souls
Weak minds
Weak life (If I'm right, this would be Prospect #2 revealing his contempt for humanity's flaws. If he created new life, it would just be, to him, an army of weak life. This works well with a line from Hypersleep Dialogues, "They let these people recreate. Maybe I should have ended it all. Too late?" Which would be him reflecting on the humanity he once knew. When we consider all this, Prospect #2 "ending what [he has] begun" would be ending new life before it just ruins another planet again.)

So what we have here is a masochistic space-traveling protagonist with a God complex, probably following orders from Night Owls.
I admit, what "The Night Owls always send me back. Seems to be in their DNA" could mean, I don't know.

There's also the curious line "the letter is all I left for explaining." My first thought of this was that Prospect #2 had written a sort of explanation note on his home planet for anyone to read, but if that's the case, it's never mentioned again. My second thought, which I developed much later in the album, is that this is the same letter as a letter integral to Prospect #1's story. But we'll talk more about this one when we get there. Just.. keep the letter in mind for now.

To wrap this up, let's recap. Prospect #2 wakes up from hypersleep/his astral body ("Crusty-eyed symphony awakened by my grunts and moans/I wake to my own whimper") to find that his ship is flying towards the center of the galaxy/wherever Folder 502 is telling his ship to go.


This is a short instrumental track acting as an ambient interlude, with the sounds of space and alien noises (according to the album credits, at least). The accompanying art is of two planets crashing into each other.

As much as I don't want to admit it, I don't think any story happens here.

"Extremophile Elite"

Prospect 1:
To see one's self is hard to explain
Last night was the first notion of this
Once again real life and dreams are whirling amongst one another
Space flight navigator
A walking mirror
Galaxy drifter
Entwined together
To grasp the other hand
To hear the other speak
Carve one's skin out of their own soil
Sends chills throughout my body

Wake up to a dirt covered surrounding
Machines in the distance
Something far too familiar
The world comes to a screeching halt when I cover my ears
Lift off the hands and the claws work again
Digging graves
Deeper graves
The machines deafen my ears with such extremity
Constant maze from digging graves
I bury my head in the dirt
It all stops

This sends bliss throughout me
Upside down dreaming
The sound of earth soothes my entire body
Real life and dreams are whirling
(A hand lifts my head out of the dirt)
Pulling hairs from what seems to be my brain
I see him... me... us?
The walking mirror
.fade out.

Prospect 2:
Eyes slowly open as dust clouds surround me
Speak to me freely
I am listening

The clanking of machines scream in the distance
I strain in order to get up
Soon I stumble down a dirt hill and see a buried man
Just his skull is underground
Once again real life and dreams are whirling amongst one another
Walking into a certain state of desperation
(Dig deep into the soil to lift the man's head. It pulls out of the ground with ease.)

Carve one's skin out of their own soil
Sends chills throughout my body
It is a corpse
Something is buried where his head once lay
A note... my note
My hands shake and I fall to my knees
Slowly read... "please know I love..."

Accompanying art is of both Prospects, looking fairly identical, reaching out to shake each other's hand.

Here, the events are told twice, once through each Prospect's eyes. Do note that the only context we have had since Hypersleep Dialogues is of Prospect #2; Prospect #1 has context that is still to come. The basic events of this song are Prospect #2 finding a man with his head buried in the ground, pulling him out of the ground to discover it's Prospect #1.

Prospect #1's perspective: He had dreamed the previous night of meeting Prospect #2 ("To see one's self is hard to explain, Last night was the first notion of this"), and in his dream saw the whole cutting-up-pieces-from-his-body deal ("Carve one's skin out of their own soil, Sends chills throughout my body"). ...I think. He wakes up in a graveyard of sorts where nearby machines are digging new graves, and the noise fills Prospect #1 with such anxiety that he buries his head in the dirt to get away from it all. And then he's pulled out to meet his mirror.

Prospect #2's perspective: He wakes up, vowing to keep his humility going ("Speak to me freely, I am listening," though the way the line is sung in the song makes me vaguely believe it's more of a cynical application of sarcasm), noticing he is now on a new planet (his ship had probably landed by this point). He finds Prospect #1, digs him up, and then sees a note that he says is his note. ..the end.

The note is the most confusing part for me. The most likely option is that it's the note he left for explaining that he mentioned in "Lay Your Ghosts to Rest," but then why would it be buried on Prospect #1's planet? As I mentioned earlier, Prospect #1 does have a letter that is integral to his arc, but  Prospect #2 shows no sign of it being that letter in question. So this part is a bit of a mystery.

OH BUT I HAVE SPECULATION ON IT: Perhaps Prospect #2's letter was a suicide one, left on his planet to inform whoever may find it that he has gone and will never return. Perhaps, leading off this, Prospect #1's letter was also a suicide letter, written exactly the same. Prospect #2 sees it and mistakes it as his own, then coming to the realization that both Prospects parallel each other. This works well when considering it's the transition to the following song.


Every time I closed my eyes, I saw my astral body in space
For nights on end I watched myself
I knew our pain was the same
Neither constructed nor taken away
We have always known our options
It was the relativity of time and space in our shared conscious which brought us together
Now we are one
Two forces intwined to make a decision

Art is same as "Extremophile Elite's."

So this is basically Prospect #2 explaining that both Prospects share a lot of the same beliefs and pains.

"The Black Box"

I see all
I hear all
Build it from nothing
Let fringed wings free
Come soar with me

We build mountains to crush oceans
You're in danger from our creations

can you? will you? build you?

Accompanying art is of an ominous owl perched atop a mini planet.

Admittedly, this is another fairly difficult song to analyze, at least when we're not fully certain what the context is. If we're leading off my analysis so far, this would be Prospect #2 proposing that Prospect #1 join him. The "We build mountains to crush oceans, You're in danger from our creations" bit would be him speaking of humanity as a whole, pointing out the inevitable danger of humanity's growing ambitions. After all, Prospect #2 was one of the people who ended his own planet; he knows what he's talking about here.


The Decision (Prospect 2 speaks):
Built to destroy
Born to compress
Every worry
Every idea
Push it deep down
The blood vessel cover
The skin suit of anxiety
Never speak a word
Just do as you're told and compete
Compete for success, for health, for sport
Climb the mountain of limbs

Build the walls around me
A covered land mine
Every smile, every itch
A covered land mine
Push it deep down
Put your head under the ground
Worm discussion

Built to destroy
Born to dominate
As I am you
You will never know
Just like all the fools before you
Here, is what we must do

She Writes:
I awake to a cold touch. Two arms in four-armed bed. The touch of wind wrapping around me. I'm trying to follow its scent. The scent of isolation. Every door opened, every aspect of our life... gone. Hauling around our memories. Every corner a display of our life. A life I assume will never be the same again. No signs, no clues. A game that I will question until the end. Where have you gone? Was I ever important? The late nights lend ideas, but nothing to gather actual progress.

Years go by. The constant stare. The constant grip inside. Every organ grinding. Every day seems easier until I step back into our box. Boxed in. Surrounded by life, while suffocating inside a poor version of one. Grip the match, set the fire. Don't save a thing.
Rebirth. Reborn. Now this is progress. The black box will reveal only this. I will sit. Sit and wait until not a breath escapes my body. Burning in our box. What did all of this even mean? More objects to represent a status. One we can't even prove. Hide behind what we have taken. You have done this. The memory of me will leave with the ash of lost treasures. Goodbye to you. Goodbye to everything.

She Speaks:
Was I ever really alive?
Did I stay in his mind?

Goodbye to all I've known
I love you

Prospect 2:
Do as we are built
Machines for the future
Bright eyed and ready for life
The dual gods of our time
Of all time
They will never see us coming
Let's end it all
Start from scratch
Patch the uniform and let the galaxy form a comfortable replacement
We will not be missed
Goodbye to everything

Prospect 1:
Doing as one's told
A puppet through fear
The crossed finger clicking sounds
Inner anxiety with a smile
(Will he even know this? Will she notice? I haven't even begun telling her the truth, or telling you about her for that matter.)
Why can't we step back?
Are we really this important?
Just because we can doesn't mean we should
(Let things happen naturally)
Personal resets through selfish release
At least I will enjoy
The worry slips under the door
(I will never see him or I again)
You won't see me coming

Art is of an asteroid belt.

Okay, so clearly a lot happens here. Before I talk about the Prospects, let me discuss that big prose section labelled "She Writes." My interpretation of this is that this is the lover of Prospect #1. "Swim to the Moon" consisted of Prospect #1 going out to sea for a few days, but then Hypersleep Dialogues contained this bit when he was being taken back to civilization:

Many days and fewer nights... so I'm told.
I've lost my time years ago... so I'm told. (This could be taken as saying that the people who found him told him that he had been gone for much longer than he'd assumed.)
The explaining. The whispered words. (Whispered words, almost like they're trying to hide something from him.)
This will be the hardest part... so I'm told. (The hardest part would be, in this case, breaking the news to Prospect #1 that his wife had killed herself.)

..because yes, that's my interpretation: Prospect #1's wife killed herself because her life lost its meaning without her lover. He left without letting anyone know, just so he could selfishly escape from his daily stresses. So, after years ("I've lost my time years ago"), she decides to set their entire house on fire and burn to death with all her memories. Either that or she literally stepped into a box and set it on fire. But I'm pretty sure it's the house.

There are only two parts of this I'm not sure of: "Rebirth, reborn," and whether or not Prospect #1 actually knows his wife is dead by this point. "Rebirth" makes me think there's more I'm missing, though it could just be a poetic end to her life. As for the second point, Prospect #1 mentions a "her" in his lyrics, but the events of "Melting City" later on lead me to believe he either doesn't yet know she's dead or is repressing the knowledge. ..actually, it could very easily be repression; that would give him a parallel with Prospect #2 coming to terms with the loss of his world in Hypersleep Dialogues.

So then! Let's now take a look at what happens with the Prospects during "Telos." The basic summary is both Prospects discuss what they must do.

Prospect #2's decision: Basically, Prospect #2 talks a lot about his views on human nature that he'd been hinting at before. Anxiety controls us and drives us down the wrong paths, fueling us as a species and surely bringing us to nowhere but destruction. The line "You will never know, Just like all the fools before you" would refer to Prospect #2's foreknowledge of his humanity ending their world, and Prospect #1's humanity heading in the same direction. So he proposes that they, the "dual gods of our time" (more of that Godlike complex), end not just their lives but the lives of all humanity. "Let the galaxy form a comfortable replacement. We will not be missed" sums it up fairly well.

Prospect #1's reply: Okay, this is where I start really speculating and might very well be wrong. Let me give a breakdown:

Doing as one's told
A puppet through fear (Could either be an agreement with Prospect #2's thesis on human nature, or as I speculate, realizing that he doesn't know if he wants to be Prospect #2's puppet through fear)
The crossed finger clicking sounds
Inner anxiety with a smile
(Will he even know this? Will she notice? I haven't even begun telling her the truth, or telling you about her for that matter.) (The way he speaks about "her" implies that he doesn't know she's dead yet.)
Why can't we step back? ("Why should we jump straight to suicide?")
Are we really this important? (A denial of the God complex.)
Just because we can doesn't mean we should
(Let things happen naturally)
Personal resets through selfish release (I speculate this refers to the events of "Swim to the Moon," resetting his life and selfishly taking him out of his life. My theory is that this is Prospect #1 secretly saying he intends on running away from Prospect #2, shirking the responsibility #2 claims #1 has so that #1 can be content in isolation, or with his wife if he doesn't yet know of her death.)
At least I will enjoy
The worry slips under the door
(I will never see him or I again) (This seems to support my theory.)
You won't see me coming

So, to recap: The Prospects have met. Prospect #2 views humanity cynically and proposes they end it all. Prospect #1 is unsure, intends on running off in the face of this anxiety #2 is presenting (the fact that Prospect #1 was found with his head in the ground, which Prospect #2 mentions as an anxiety coping mechanism, shows that Prospect #1 does not know how to cope well under pressure, especially when you add his "Swim to the Moon" escapade). In the middle of all this, we're given the life and death of Prospect #1's wife.


Get down here and sing the songs we sing
In bloom we come
Tentacles swing with the water's breeze
In bloom we...

Crowd around
Drift down slowly
Get rid of your undesirable oxygen
Just drift on down with us
In bloom we grow
Together as one
This underwater village
Bebop skippity tippity tap those toes

Queen Sea will take you in
This is your new home now
Ignore the laughter
We will not hurt you
Your last wishes
Queen Sea will take you in

In bloom we know what life is all about
With not a worry in the world
Let the water move you
Move to the sweet sway of nutrition
Move to the sweet sway of melody

Queen Sea will give back life
We used you
Your purpose is clear
We never knew

Floating back to the surface

(Tentacle hearse transportation...
Actual happenings or the distant mind?)

Accompanying art is of an underwater nude woman with dozens of blooming tentacles entangled around her (probably coming out of her). There are also what seem to be jellyfish surrounding her.

Ah, this song. One of my two favourite songs on this whole album, my god. Just plain beautiful, practically one big Big Lipped Alligator Moment in both music and lyric. But let's try to make sense of it.

So, either when Prospect #1 was floating over the course of "Swim to the Moon," or at this current point in the story if Prospect #1 reacted to his anxiety by simply going to the ocean again, he is pulled down underwater/asked to come down underwater to meet the cryptic Queen Sea character. Though this could very easily just be a dream sequence, with Queen Sea being a metaphor for Prospect #1's desire to drown. The last line ("Actual happenings or the distant mind?") makes it clear it probably isn't meant to be clear whether it happened or not.

..personally, I would love it if it turned out "Bloom" really happened. Maybe I just love Between the Buried and Me's disturbing antagonist characters, which is why I also love the Night Owls.

"Melting City"

The Black Mask:
Creep in
Before the rise of the sun
Execute a story never told
Do not think
Just do
No human emotion
Who says I am even human at this point?
A poor example of life
No morals
Just a huge display of direction
Hear, then do
Sneak in the box before the rise of the sun
A four-handed bed occupied by only two
The window is yawning

Faceless in a sea of space
My propulsion from their pain

In, out
Why would they need me for a simple confession?
Collect, then destroy
Collect, then destroy
Before the rise of the sun

Faceless in a sea of space
My propulsion from their pain

Years Later:
Frantic writing
Not meant for my eyes
Why did I keep this? What inside forced me to see the ink?
Smoothed out, then in pieces.
I can't live with this
I must let her know

A valley of smiling despair
Self doubt would be my first guess
Confusion, sadness, the other half
But lost through selfish measures
I can't live with this
I must let her know

(One heart in a two-heart bed. She woke to nothing. Because of me, she woke up to nothing.)

The robot has stepped out of his box
Foreigner in my own land
No profit
For once no profit
Walk in
After the rise of the sun
Conclude a story never read
A burning smell creeps up my nostrils (the box is gone)
A trapdoor locked from the inside
Incomplete me
Impossible conclusion

Faceless in a sea of space
My propulsion from their pain

Accompanying art is of a sci-fi planet landscape with mountains. There is a house on a mountain with smoke coming out of its windows.

Okay, so I came up with another interpretation of "Bloom" while transcribing those lyrics there. According to this new interpretation, one I will use for the remainder of this analysis, it would have been a dream Prospect #1 had years ago that led him to go out to sea in the first place. The lyrics call him to the ocean, after all, and they also mention that they "used" him.

So directly after Prospect #1 has this dream, "Melting City" happens. While we're still going with this interpretation, the Black Mask would be Prospect #1 himself. He sneaks into the box (his house) "before the rise of the sun," before his wife wakes up. He takes whatever he needs and gets going.

Then, years later, we see the current point in the story; the "Black Mask," Prospect #1, returns to his home. He sees the note his wife wrote for him ("Frantic writing, Not meant for my eyes"). He has to let his wife know he's here, but he smells smoke and finds her dead.

The chorus ("Faceless in a sea of space, My propulsion from their pain") is cryptic, I admit. A lot of parts of this song are. I have the feeling this song is the point where probably everyone's theories on the album get muddled, as this song seems to introduce so many new elements, including a new character name (The Black Mask). But I'm willing to bet that Between the Buried and Me stuck to general writing conventions and made sure not to introduce a new essential character this far into the story (ignore the fact that Prospect #1's wife wasn't even mentioned until "Telos;" technically speaking that's just about the halfway point for the album, so it could pass). I think this song is about Prospect #1 because-- well okay because it seems to deal with his wife's death, so he's a good contender for the song focus. But aside from that! Aside from that, it's the three-chorus song structure, the epic metal feel, and the constant wordplay and metaphors. I feel like this song can be compared to the general feel of "Swim to the Moon," which would work considering this is basically what happens before and after the song.

"Silent Flight Parliament"

Prospect 2:
I know what I must do
I'm coming home

Fixed socket threat
Binocular vision
I see all
I hear all
Superior intellect
I'm the night owl
Built by the alien gods
A necessity to the existence of all life
Fixed socket threat
Binocular vision
I see all
I hear all
I'm the night owl

I return in the day but you won't ever see me
Only my eyes
The blaring yellow sphere
A sharp distortion
The TV screen you stare at night after night
Over and over

You are staring into me
Cut the wires and cut your ties
You aren't what you think
An experiment
They will send us to warn, but that's part of the game as well
Fucking weaklings

Prospect 2:
I still know what my mind tells you to do
Cut out pieces to form new

Am I me?
What is he?

It's come to the point of opening the box
Carved in the side are the words: Property of the Night Owls
Smash to unlock the desperate measures

Am I me?
What is he?

He is found and I will drag him to his end
It's not selfish if it's what's right
He knows I'm looking for him
This thievery is for the bettering of all humankind
So it seems

Creep in
Before the rise of the sun
They are sleeping
Holding each other like it's the last...
And it is
Open the valve
Fill the room
Say goodbye to everything

Am I me?

Seek the day
Never again
Weightless in a sea of space

Prospect 1:
Eyes open to the sound of laughter
Like a mighty God casting his spells on the world below
The man is me

Jet propulsion disengage
Dancing towards our future
A future of nothing
A future towards nothing
Goodbye to everything

Accompanying art is of the silhouette of a crumbling asteroid.

..okay so there's even more confusing stuff here. We're presented with monologues from "Strigiformes," which Google tells me is the fancy name for owls, so this is basically the part where the long-discussed Night Owls finally come into play. ..uh. Where to begin.

Let me tell you what my interpretation is of the Night Owls in this song. The way I see it, that large Strigiformes section translates to a description of how evolved the Night Owls are, as well as a reveal that all of humanity (or at least just the Prospects) has just been an experiment, a game. They're basically the masterminds behind everything. And then I also have this interpretation that the world Prospect #1 lived in was also the same world of "Fossil Genera," but then that's more of my theory that all of The Great Misdirect is a dystopian view of a dying world, and that's for another day!

As for Prospect #2's part in the song, I see it as him deciding, with absolute determination, on ending everything one way or another. So he makes it to the burning house of Prospect #1 (ominously stamped "Property of the Night Owls," possibly supporting my wilder theory of #1's world) and finds #1 sleeping with his dead wife. ...but wait, it says they're "holding each other," and she wouldn't be able to hold him back if she were dead. Unless it's just metaphorical, which is fairly likely. Hell, I don't even know if #1 and his wife truly are the "They" the song speaks of. It's very hard to tell! And then the bit about the "Open the valve, Fill the room," goodness. No idea what the hell that might mean. So for the purpose of my interpretation, I'll simply.. assume it to be very metaphorical.

Then the Night Owls laugh over the Prospects being weightless in a sea of space, because by this point Prospect #2 will have taken #1 back to his ship. Or somethWAIT GOT IT

THE VALVE BIT will have been Prospect #2 working on killing the humans on Prospect #1's world. .....let's stick with the metaphorical interpretation, at least it made sense.

The point is that the Night Owls are laughing because their plan went well and Prospect #2 went and did it in the end anyway.

Then Prospect #1 wakes up just in time to see it all end. Or at least for Prospect #2 to disengage the jet propulsion so the two can dance towards their future of nothing (FLOATING TOWARDS THE SUN, THE SUN OF NOTHING).

What I'm trying to say here is that, by this point, I don't think definitive conjecture is possible without the band themselves giving us more context. Whether they will or if they'll expand upon characters or themes in later albums (I would love to see more Night Owl focus, or for it to turn out Queen Sea was real), I don't know, but as it stands Future Sequence's lyrics make it incredibly hard to even come up with an accurate hypothesis.

..oh yeah, and

"Goodbye to Everything Reprise"

Goodbye to everything!

There, album's over. The booklet ends with a picture of stars saying "Goodbye to everything," a picture of Prospect #2's disembodied astral body hand, and a picture of a Night Owl (or at least of an owl).

So, to wrap up my interpretation, the Prospects have either ended human life or at least just ended their own lives, either by flying into a black hole/a sun or into the emptiness of space forever. "Goodbye to everything," and all that. Only it turns out it was all planned all along by the Night Owls. Because those guys are freaking awesome. And Prospect #1 has nothing to live for now that he knows for sure his wife is dead or whatever it turns out to be, and Prospect #2 has had nothing to live for ever since Hypersleep Dialogues but at least now he has company and can bask in his Godlike complex until his death. Whenever that will be.

Thus ends the tales of "Lost Perfection," "Prequel to the Sequel," "Fossil Genera (A Feed From Cloud Mountain)," and "Swim to the Moon" as I have attempted to interpret them! ...well, probably the end. I doubt Between the Buried and Me will make The Parallax III. Or even a small song on a future album giving an epilogue, though that would be pretty neat.

..so yeah. Thank you for reading along, whoever decided to read this. All lyrics and the music I refer to is written and performed by Between the Buried and Me. And the art I refer to is.. credited in the lyric booklet somewhere.

The end!

Now go home.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

"Everything the Same, III"

The world breathes the same. The waters still the same. Nothing has changed a bit; your life continues the same. History repeats, everything the same.
And every mind thinks, the same:

What of that enigma that was no Camper? What of the beast with the wheels that disappeared down this tunnel? Will I ever see it again? Will it ever allow itself to be seen again?
Will I ever learn its secrets?

Come a year, everything the same.
Come a hundred years, everything the same.
Come a thousand, everything the same.
Come the end of the universe, everything the same. Now to play it all over again. Now to try once more for the passion play. Now to try once more to learn, to escape.
Once more, with feeling.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

THIRTY SECONDS: The Silence Before the Battle

I'm going to school on Monday. After that, I will have school every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

So.. basically, this blog may very well turn into a more traditional OOG blog. I might start talking about blah blah blah people I know and schoolwork. But I think I'll try my best to keep a firm grounding in the Fear Mythos, as I view that to be my profession. I intend on trying to see if I can lure a few people I meet in college to enter our mythos, too. >w>

..god, can you imagine if I got a video camera and was able to make a full-on Fearvlog?

ALSO I'm gonna get to play Black Mesa today. This mod has been in development for eight years, and I've actually been waiting for it this entire time. I was introduced to it shortly after it was announced; I got into the Half-Life series when I was about nine or ten. And.. well, eight years of development hell later, Black Mesa has finally come out! For reference, it's a complete re-imagining of the original Half-Life into the source engine and closer to the standards of present-day Valve titles. It's made entirely by fans, and as it's a mod, it's absolutely free!
But the only catch is that, although it's finally being released, Black Mesa isn't exactly finished. The last four chapters of the game aren't included; the mod ends after "Lambda Core." Now, this is actually fairly understandable, considering the last four chapters of the game are somehow reviled by most fans (*shrugs* They happen to be some of my favourite chapters in video game history, to each his own) and are just.. god. Without trying to spoil anything, they provide such a contrast to the rest of the game and they try for things that not many video games dare trying. And are beautiful. owe But the developers are, indeed, hard at work on them! The rest of the game will be released and updated to the mod sometime in 2013.
THE POINT IS THAT 5/6 of the game are still there to play, and the thing about Half-Life is that those 5/6 of the game are still among the greatest chapters to any video game ever. And after eight years of waiting, I'm stoked to get to play this.
I'd do an LP but I'll be playing on my brother's computer. :C

So yes! This has been, quite possibly, one of the most.. significant weekends in my entire life. OH AND NANQUEST


NanQuest is a /tg/ adventure about Nan, an adorable goat repairwoman who has a job to do in a hotel. I.. won't say much more. It's the spiritual successor to RubyQuest, which was about Ruby, an adorable bunny who wakes up in a strange metal lab. Both stories have adorable art and utterly terrifying content. Though NanQuest is still ongoing, in my opinion it seems so much better for so many freaking reasons. I still love RubyQuest, though! Fantastic freaking story. A classic horror tale, expertly presented and wonderfully enacted. It's just that NanQuest has a much richer focus on storytelling and somehow managed to capture every terrifying thing in the world in one frightening hotel. I love spooky hotels. Hotels, forests, highways, and modern cities are my all-time favourite horror locations. >W<

..but yes. The reason I bring this up is because I recently checked up on it and it turns out the sixth thread has been released. Plus the fifth thread got a second half that I never read. So I caught up and just oh my god this story is so brilliant.


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Educational Video: "How to Design a Blog"

For all you aspiring Fearbloggers out there, let me tell you a thing or two about how to make your blog look fantastic. :D

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Comedy of Bones

This is Entry 39 of Marble Hornets (Part 2). This will come in handy.

One thing Eric "Bones" Taylor and I like to do is watch films while giving our commentary of them MST3K-style (we also like to watch episodes of MST3K while giving our commentary on the commentary). Marble Hornets is something we adore giving commentary on. I mean, we both love the entries, but there's still something really fun about slender man humour. Hell, we're among the few people on the internet who truly find "Gimme Twenty Dollars" funny, but hopefully this blog post should give you a good idea of what kind of comedy we like to bring to a situation.

So when Marble Hornets Part 2 ended, Bones and I gathered in his basement and watched it on glorious HD. We spent a lot of this actually not making that many jokes, as Part 2 is pretty damn tense and admirably well-done. But Bones surprised the fuck out of me when we got to Entry 39. To attempt to even remotely convey the art of Bones' quick one-line commentary, I will simply give you timestamps.

1:18 "Masky's driving that car."

1:29 "Slendy's driving that one; they're having a car chase."

2:06 "Look, Masky won!"

List of my Fearblog Reviews

Earlier reviews
CuteWithoutThe: The Hunter
alliterator: Snowball in Hell
proxiehunter: To Light a Candle

Modern reviews:
Allanbag: Memoirs for Breakfast
TheSomnambulist: The World Through These Eyeholes part 1, part 2
The Visitor: Terrific
queenofinsanity6: Take the Myth
Omega: Mephi Act 1
Multiple: A Realm of Emptiness
GraciousVictory: The Public Castigation of a Lowly Hypochondriac
Acelegin: Daniel & Friends The Gods of Darkness Arc
Multiple: The Puppet's Game 2 (half-assed review)
AmeliaTanaka: A Fly on the Wall part 1
Malus: Blank Space
tgecko: Penny Dropped part 1, part 2
RedRockingHood: City of Sinopia part 1

Saturday, August 11, 2012

A Tired Ramble That Becomes Self-Gushing

I'm so tired. But let's make a blog post; it's been a while.

So OH GOD THE RAPTURE IS BURNING is 4/5 complete. Over that by now, actually. There is exactly one month of logs left to go; the newest log was September 21st, and the story will end on October 21st. ..well, I'll probably write an epilogue of sorts, but that's nothing, that'll be easy. For now, we just gotta worry about this thing we call Act IV.

Jesus. This isn't gonna be easy. It hasn't been so far, and it won't be now.

So far, we've had a lot of Fear politics and some glimpses into Xanadian politics as well. To be honest, Xanadu probably won't get that much focus. ...probably. I mean, I do want to skirt along the edges of conventional high fantasy, but c'mon. Rapture is high fantasy. High.. surrealist apocalyptic fantasy horror black comedy romance adventure mystery. In stream-of-consciousness.

Wouldn't it be rad if, years from now, people looked back on Rapture as one of our generation's important works of fiction? For its deconstructions of the blogging medium, the zombie apocalypse and post-apocalyptic genres, epic video game motifs, and.. whatever the hell else it deconstructs? As well as for being a work written entirely in stream-of-consciousness; I'm pretty sure that counts for something.

You may have noticed I'm in a self-gushing mood right now. "They say pride comes before the fall," more like they say the asshole comes with the stupid quotes. Now I'm talking to myself.

The point is that I need to write before I can do all of my boasting. And honestly, I'm really nervous. I mean, shit. This is the act that has been foreshadowed since, like, day one. The final battle at the end of this has to be, like, all magnitudes of epic. It has to be completely built up and completely complex and completely eldritch and completely extensive. The Lamb versus The Beast! Cockroach Jesus versus the slender man wearing a scarf and trilby! This is something I never thought I'd write!

This entire story is something I never thought I'd write. Five months of deconstructive apocalypse with me as the protagonist who gets laid a lot all told through stream-of-consciousness? Jeeeeesus. A work of the internet medium, at that. One of these days, the internet medium will be massively big. Like, exponentially more than it currently is. And on that day, I kinda really really hope that Rapture will be remembered.

...and I don't even need to mention that Rapture is an epic. It is, in every way, an epic. The noun form. And I can't tell you how cool that is to realize: I wrote an epic. I wrote a modern epic.

..well. I'm writing one. I need to finish it. I do. For the good of everyone! And for the good of myself!


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

"Everything the Same, II"

The world rotates several more times, the nations flooding and flowing with water and structure.

In a desert country, two former humans stand fifty feet away from each other, massive armies behind each, men standing line-by-line and ready for war. Not a single toy wonders what the point of fighting is when every mind is the same consciousness, for the Camper all know exactly what this conflict's purpose is.

Sound off, one two three.

Muskets fly, spears pierce, feet trample, limbs make contact, bruises develop. Not a single voice is heard; there is no need for exclamation in a world where all think alike. Pain is all in the mind, and what are a few limbs to a being with all the arms in the world?

Thirteen minutes later, only the leader Camper are left standing. Neither had moved an inch in the duration of the skirmish, their faces remaining stern as the philosophies they share. The desert is littered with bodies, and not one of them is dead, only sleeping with holes in their hearts.

At this call of silence, the corpses rise and begin their exodus, following the leaders to the next town, where they will repeat the skirmish identically, a shot-by-shot remake of an artificial war film.

This is how conflicts are settled: Systematically.

In an urban country, a stadium stands, filled with a quiet race of Camper watching the game, concentrating on every nuance and detail. Down on the field, balls are kicked around, boundaries are crossed, figures dash from side to side. Points are scored, boards light up, and the crowd cheers together at every goal, mouths closed at every other instant.

The tactics of the game run through every mind to the point of becoming second-nature. If a Camper in the crowd were to stand up and run onto the field, she could seamlessly enter the game and not a play would be out of place.

A blimp flies overhead with the winning team's name being advertised to the people in the bleachers. Every character knows who the winners will be, and every part of the crowd knows the details of every participant of the blimp. Not one mind ponders on the purpose of advertisement in a world where all are one; all the coaches and all the players and all the producers and all the audience knows what this event's purpose is.

When the game is won, the predicted winners are carried out by a mob of fans with emotionless faces. Parties are held, celebrations roar in every household. Every detail is carefully planned and executed by the same mind, never questioning the point, always certain in the answers sought.

This is how conflicts are created: Systematically.

Everything the same.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Sunsetters: "The Last Sunset"

Life ends, inferno
Splashing surroundings.
Watch the sky turn red.
Trees darken and voices join the sentient wind.
Apologize no more,
Don't mourn the last sunset.
Cold figures laugh at themselves,
The ultimate practical joke.
They see skies fading,
Their faces regret nothing at all tonight.
Still, they think once of
The last sunset bitter.
Water dies,
With its last breath gone,
The Earth becomes memory.

This is my first attempt at writing proper lyrics for a Sunsetters song. It's titled "The Last Sunset," and it's meant to be a fictional sad piano song off of their debut album, Sunsetters. Track six. See, I went and figured out a rough idea of their entire discography, all eight albums, all thirteen discs. Sunsetters will be relevant to both Topography Genera and Rapture.

I hope that the excerpted lyrics might be satisfactory for anyone who.. likes poetry. <:D

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Future Sequence (oh my god)

Whoa, Blogger's updated its engine and stuff. This is surreal. ANYWAY, let me give you an update on my life! :D

So first of all, OH GOD THE RAPTURE IS BURNING has started its fourth act. We're two logs in. I've been taking my time with writing it, brushing up on my high fantasy and charting maps of the realms of Xanadu. I have to make at least eleven boss battles for this act, man. This is a difficult act to write, but I intend on putting forth the effort to do it because my readers deserve an epic finale to an epic of a story. And I owe it to myself to make a story I can be proud of consistently, from start to finish.

Second, I've been posting Rapture on Slender Nation, and I've added hashtags to every log. I want more readers, y'know? I want to put my name out there. It's about time I stop being anxious about that and flaunt my stories in more places. Hell, doing this has already gotten me, like, eight new followers in about a week. I'm pretty happy with that!

Third, I recently took a break from writing the epic that is Rapture and wrote a 25-post comedy blog called PLAN 31: CLOSE ENCOUNTER OF THE SOCK KIND. It's a mixture of DCA, Topography Genera, and Rapture. ..like, it literally is a mixture of the three stories. But also with Fear Mythos inside jokes thrown in. But I mean, you could probably read it without knowing any of our inside jokes; if you take it all at face value, it probably seems accidentally Pratchettian. I seem to be good at that despite only ever having read about fifteen pages of one Terry Pratchett book ever. xD But yeah! PLAN 31 really turned out well, considering literally the only reason I started it was as a writing exercise.

Fourth, I'd may as well say this somewhere: Topography Genera isn't gonna be updating much for a few months. Because Rapture. I mean, there'll still be updates, sure, but don't expect much in the way of serious story.

Fifth, "How's that Rapture project with Rappu going?" Just fine. >w>



Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Act III is over!

OH GOD THE RAPTURE IS BURNING's third act is complete. That's right, "The Duels of the Knights of Xanadu" is over. Clocking in at a staggering thirty-nine logs, this has been Rapture's longest act. It has also been the most down-to-earth, and it was probably the most character-driven and complex piece I've ever written.

Am I proud of it? Yes.

Am I satisfied with it? No. Yes. Maybe.

So what's the scoop? What was the third act about? Well, it focused on expanding upon a recurring motif of the story that I had only barely scratched the surface of: The Fears falling from their heaven. The concept that the Fears view themselves as these God-like beings with true power over the human race, yet in the end, a bigger fish comes around and shows them how petty they are. Once they realize there's something far more eldritch than them coming to kill them all, they start to trust humans a lot more. But their fall from heaven doesn't come without resistance, of course, and that's where a lot of Fears go crazy with insecurity (like The Ecclesiarchway or The Harlequin).

Then on the other side of the plot fence, the third act was about emotions and being too driven by them, letting them land you into nasty heaps of trouble. ..'sabout it.

So what's gonna happen next? Well, that's what I'm gonna be figuring out over the next few months.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Another Rapture Ramble!

So next up in OH GOD THE RAPTURE IS BURNING will be the exciting finale to the third act. I've been writing in excess lately, and I.. well, it'd be inaccurate to say "I've burned out." Because I'm around that point in my life where I can write pretty damn easily. The only problem there was that I got burned out for that one day, which itself was because I've had to write two filler logs in a row. Filler isn't fun to write.

But it was necessary filler, it really was. The protagonists had to go from Iceland (to Finland, and then) to Australia, and they had to meet up with the Knights of Xanadu on the way and decide to focus their efforts on attacking The Neonate. But on the way, I had to throw in creative rabbit holes, and that really.. gets repetitive. But really, the logs were necessary; there needed to be a break between the epic logs before and the epic finale after.

But hey! Now we're at the finale, which was planned to be the climax/turning point for the whole story! Of course, I've eased a lot of the burden by sorta spreading the climactic revelations out among the logs preceding it. Plus Jordan's been naturally progressing as a human being to become a better person, whereas he originally was planned to just have a mindblowing "THIS IS WHAT YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO DO" speech in the climax. But now that'll be much more logical, more like a final nail in the coffin instead of putting all the nails in at the same time.

As for what the finale will entail, you can probably predict some stuff at this point. The setting will be the Topography Genera Center South (originally planned to be West), or rather it'll be half that and half Xanadu. ..a very specific place in Xanadu. The chess pieces will be the protagonists, Phil Collins and Beavis Superbear, The Neonate, The Anathema, some more people I'll figure out, The Ruin, Salmacis, Tiresias, The Musicians, and Cockroach Jesus.

I gotta say, this is probably one of the most plot-heavy serials I've written since DCA. And it's not just plot-heavy, it's heavily specular in its reflection! Yes, there will be many parallels here with Topography Genera and-- if I can play my cards right-- DCA. Rapture's crossing paths with all kinds, and it's gonna do it in such a way that you won't even notice if you're not specifically looking. ..if I can play my cards right.

Honestly, I'm nervous as fuck about this.

On a much more mundane note, I'm thinking of naming the serial "Topography Genera." Simply because that's a really nice name. But I might think of a better name.

Friday, June 22, 2012

"The Facebook Theater Show: Murder, Plain and Simple"

In late March of 2011, I made a Facebook note that was basically a murder mystery involving whatever friends I could think of. I figured I'd post it here. May as well migrate all my works into one place! Do note that this was the first part of a planned trilogy. I did have about half of the second done, and I might go back and finish this.

YOU is a stickman. His name is seriously "You." He is the protagonist of pretty much every story ever.

You enters the Facebook Theater from left. He steps in front of the closed curtain, looks in the front row and sees a lot of curious faces. No doubt they're all here because of the news... You thinks to himself.

He steps up to the mic and clears his throat. "Hello, ladies and gentlemen. Those of you who have not yet taken a seat, please do so now." Seconds pass. "I assume you've all read the flyer, or the e-mail, or whatever news you got that told you to go to the Facebook Theater. I know you must all be wondering what the big news is that I shall be telling you. Well, I'm getting to that.

"I see some high and important faces in our audience tonight. Jane's here. Of course. Explains why our bouncer is dead. What's that? ...oh, of course. He called you 'miss.' Where's Jordan? ....in the bathroom? Alright. Who's that I see further back? Paul Botsford, the man who demolishes cul-de-sacs in his spare time? What a surprise to have you here! *gasp* Why, if I didn't know better, I'd swear that's.. Catie 'Fentzy' DeBiaso, the 'badass of science.' Can't be. At a Facebook show? What are the odds? ..oh hello! Eric 'Bones' Taylor! I'd recognize that moustache anywhere. Oh, some people just coming in. Daniel Finnegan, I see there. Yes, you. I know for a fact you're a miner. I also see Simon Phillips, Australian guy. Still out of a job, Simon? Ah, you rascal. I keep expecting to see.... and I do! Melody LaRochelle, who famously brought The Beatles back from the dead and managed them for seven years! Oh, it is such an honour.

"Hm, it seems Wilson Dworschak is attending tonight. Work not keeping you too busy, I see. Nor is it keeping Mister Alex Toor busy, either, since he's also attending. That's right, I saw you, Alex. ..how did I not see youTyler Murray? Everyone, you may know him better as Lil Hungry. The rapper. Oh, the guys are coming in from the bathroom. There, I see Owen Norris, creator of the mythos we all know and love. That.. one mythos. With the twelve monsters. Then coming in is Dovid Steinberg, not creating any kind of wave. How appropriate. Oh, the duo of dudes are here! That is, Thomas Wagstaff and Matty Wright! We have quite the audience tonight. Hm, sorry, I skipped over Michelle Landers! You know, the famous wedding coordinator. She's here, too.

"But still. Where is.. oh! There he is. You folks may know this fellow as the creator of various novels and series; he's also a bit of a regular here at the Theater. Ladies and gentlemen, may I present Jordan Dooling? ..well, okay, I will. There he is, returning to his seat in the front row. ..the.. the guy in the slendercoat and trilby. Go ahead, Jordan, go take a seat. I'll tell you the news now.

"You see, some of you may be wondering what happened to the man known as Sean. Remember him? Star of the Sean series? ..by Jordan? He was a real person, you know. Well, I'll tell you what's happened to him.

"He's dead.


Every single member of the audience stands up. The ladies realize they're standing and then promptly sit. The coupled ladies pull their partners down with them.

"I understand this may be a little hard to swallow. You're most likely wondering how and when it happened. Well.. that's why I called you folks here. You all have your own skills; I was hoping some of you could help figure this out."

Bones raises his hand.

"Ah. Mister Taylor. Yes?"
"You want us to help figure it out? Where, exactly, is the deceased?"
"Excellent question."

You steps to the side of the stage and pulls the curtains up. The audience gasps.

On the stage of the Facebook Theater is a dead male, somewhere in his twenties (at the time this story takes place), with dirty-blonde hair. His face is frozen in anguish. His skin is pale. This is Sean. He is lying on his stomach; there is a knife wound on his back.

You urges the forming crowd to return to their seats. They do.

"As you can see, these are dark days. Sean was the catalyst for a many great adventures. Without him, future stories may be shaky. But we will mourn on a later date. For now, we need the audience's help.

"First of all, I request that, if there are any doctors or scientist-type people in this theater, they come up to the stage to offer a cause of death."

A woman further back steps up and heads down the aisle. She is the woman You had earlier thought was Catie, then dismissed her. Turns out? It was.
A voice in the front row shouts "WHOO, GO FENTZY! :D" ..yes, even the smiley face.
Fentzy waves back before stepping onto the stage.

You asks for the lady's name.
"Catie DeBiaso, Badass of Science, sir."
"...oh. Well, shit. So I was wrong."
"Yeah, looks like you were."
"I, um.. I need your help with--"
"Maybe I don't want to help you anymore."
"I'm terribly, terribly sorry for the mix-up, ma'am! It's hard to tell people apart from up on stage!"
"Yeah, you spotted all the other guys just fine."
"Sorry! So sorry!"
"Fine. What do you want, again? Cause of death?"
"Y-yes, please."

Fentzy takes one glance at the corpse.

"Knife wound in the back."
"You sure?"
"There is a blatant knife sticking out of his back. Blood is coming out."
"Okay. What about the time of death?"

Fentzy crouches and feels the corpse's neck.

"Two hours."
"That's what I said, bitch."
"Right! Uh.. hohoh."

You steps back up to the microphone and clears his throat.

"According to the expert in the theater, Sean died two hours ago by a knife w--"

You turns around to find Fentzy had flipped Sean over.
In his chest is a gunshot wound.
Fentzy looks at You; he says, "Well.. this might change some things."

"Well, folks! Things get more complicated by the second. Tell me, does anyone here have a gun?"

Moments pass. One person hesitantly stands up, holding a pistol. The person is Paul Botsford.

"Very well. Mister Botsford, you are the prime suspect for this murder, and I request that you stay in the theater until we are done questioning you. In the meantime, everyone else can leave; we will call another meeting when we are ready."

The crowd slowly and reluctantly begins leaving.

Jordan heads onto the stage as people shuffle out. The stage is oddly deserted-- only Fentzy, You, and Bones remain up there. You is standing to the side, a worried look on his face. He approaches Jordan.

"Mister Dooling, I'm not cut out for hosting. Why weren't you the speaker, like you always are?"
"I've had to give up a lot of my time ever since.. well.. settling down."
"..oh. Quite right. Of course." You looks at Jordan's outfit and remarks, "Where's your hat?"
"Huh? Oh. I dunno. Jane grabbed it again, I suppose."
"Speaking of, where is she?"
"Teabagging the dead bouncer? I have no idea. So what were you saying? You're not cut out for this gig?"
"Yes, exactly that. I tried my best, but.. this is a serious crime we've got here. Our safety may be at stake."
Jordan raises an eyebrow. "Our safety?"
"Well, yes. Sean was murdered on-stage while the curtains were down. It's absurdly dark when the curtains are down."
"Are you suggesting--"

You is needed elsewhere. He cuts Jordan off, excuses himself, and takes his leave. The trilby-less man is left pondering.

Fentzy, who was examining the body, quietly says, "You sure likes to jump to conclusions." She then gets up and leaves.

A Mister Owen Norris enters the stage and goes to talk to Bones. Jordan examines the corpse.

The gunshot wound is in the chest... but there's also the knife in the back. Both seem like fatal attacks, Jordan thinks to himself, though the gunshot wound actually doesn't seem quite as fatal. It seems to be at an angle. An upwards angle. Jordan looks upwards in all directions. Owen looks at him, then back to Bones.

Nothing up there but catwalks. I think. What about this knife? He takes a close look at the knife. It has an engraving, scratched out considerably. Jordan can just about make out "M..ec...t" on the handle.

"Yo, Rael."

Jordan looks up. Bones is walking up to him; Owen is leaving the stage.

Bones adjusts his fedora and says, "Looks like the stage is empty 'cept for the slenderbrothers."
"Yes. Looks that way. What'd Owen want?"
"He was actually asking about Marble Hornets. The Operator. Whether or not I believe in that kinda thing."
"That's an odd question to be asking at a murder scene."
"You're telling me."
"What'd you say?"
"'Nah.' I mean, The Operator's just a glorified version of the slender man, and he's an internet myth, right?"
"Of course."
"So then he told me how he's starting to believe he might be being stalked. Then he hugged me."
Jordan takes off his sunglasses. "He hugged you?"
"Yeah. Then he left. ..put your shades back on; you look weird."
'Rael' complies. "I dunno, man. This night. This night keeps getting weirder."
"It sure does."

The two stand for a bit, looking down at Sean. Bones swears he sees a red dot on the floor. Jordan ignores this.

Jordan mentions the knife. "It had an engraving. 'M.. something.'"
"Maybe it was Marble Hornets? Heh."
"Nah, it was one word. I really don't think those films have anything to do with this."
"I'm sure there are plenty of Ms in the audience."


Abruptly, Jordan is hugged from behind by Jane.
Eric spies the red dot from before moving towards Jordan.
He follows it and tries stomping on it. A small, red object falls out of his coat.
It's a bomb.
"Bones, what were you doing with that?" Asks Rael, shocked.
Bones gets up, looks at the fallen object, and says "Oh, shit!"

Other people start to return. You spies the bomb and screams. He runs up to it and checks it.
It's about to blow.
Bravely, Jane grabs the ticking explosive and runs as fast as she can to the backdoor to the theater, whereupon she throws it into the nearest dumpster.


You stares at Eric.
"Mister Taylor, you.. you were attempting to murder Jordan, weren't you?"
Bones is speechless.

Everyone is gathered back to their seats; another meeting is called.

You, despite his anxiety, resumes his role as speaker.

"I know that a good portion of the audience has left already," coincidentally, the only people left were all the people mentioned in the beginning, "but we have an increasingly worrying situation on our hands. Earlier, as you all know, Sean was murdered by gunshot. Well, a mere ten minutes ago, the regular host here at the Facebook Theater, Jordan Dooling, was.. well, not 'murdered.' It was an attempted murder and act of terrorism. Mister Eric 'Bones' Taylor tried to destroy himself as well as Jordan with a bomb."

The crowd is turned into a worried murmur.

One man attempts to stand up; he has trouble but is noticed, nontheless. This is Danny Finnegan. He asks, "Can.. can I go home? I'm sorry; I was shot in the foot, and I fear it doesn't help to be here longer."

You, a curious look on his face, asks how he got shot.

"I don't even know! It just happened, up by the stage."

The worried murmur increases into a disturbed discussion.
You tries his best to calm everyone down. Eventually, Jane screams "CAN IT, GUYS."
The room goes quiet. You thanks her.

"I can see that there is definitely some kind of.. of.. conspiracy of sorts going on. I suppose we're going to need to do some actual investigating. Jane, since people seem to do as you say, I'm putting you in charge of that."
"Can Jordan help?"
"Why? He's technically a victim; that's a little unorthodox."
"Well fuck your orthodoxy, man. He's my friend, and I want him to help."
"Ah, very well. If you really want that. The rest of you, stay put unless called upon for questioning."

The investigating team sets up a table and some chairs in the lobby.
The first person Jane calls for questioning is Paul Botsford.
He comes in and has a seat.

Jane begins the interview with a simple question.
"Did you do it?"
"Wait, do what?"
"Bitch, did you shoot Sean in the chest a couple hours ago, or did you not?"
"No!""Then what about.. this?" She pulls out Paul's pistol.
"I know what it looks like. But I was just given that gun from Jalani just this morning. I don't even know how to use it."Jordan asks for the gun. Jane keeps it and tinkers with it.
"You're right, man. It's pretty confusing. I've used less confusing weapons used to kill theoretical physicists."
"Yeah, I mean.. I didn't even ask for it or anything. He just gave it to me."
Jordan raises his hand. Jane pats him on the head. "Speak."
"Thank you, ma'am. Paul."
"Yeah, dude?"
"Was Jalani here tonight?"
"Uh.. yeah, I think so."
Jordan looks at Jane. She nods her head, then says to Paul, "Alright, perp. Back to your seat. Tell Jalani he's next."
"Kay, thanks!"
With that, Paul gets up and leaves.

Jordan tells Jane she did a really nice job.
"Thanks, bitch. Nice call on the Jalani thing. You think this could be our guy?"
"I dunno. I mean, the reason I asked Paul if Jalani was here... I mean, I haven't seen Jalani in a good while."
"What? Then who'd Paul see?"
"I guess we're gonna find out."
"Nope! I'm gonna find out."
"What'll I do, then, ma'am?"
"Go investigate. Quietly. This is our chance to find shit out."
"Oh! Great idea!"

Jordan quietly leaves and begins looking for anything of relevance.
Danny comes into the lobby and sits down.
Jane asks where Jalani is.
"Jalani's not here. I was then told to talk to you, since I'm gonna be going early."
"Bah. It's always something. So tell me, Finny. How'd you get shot, again?"
"I was up on the stage, thinkin'.."
"What were you thinking about? Tell me!"
"Nothing! Just.. Minecraft. I made the Facebook Theater in it last night. Every detail. I love this place. Jordan's lucky; he gets to host here all the time."
"Then you suddenly realized you were shot? In the foot?"
"Yeah. I screamed rather loudly, too. Not sure why people didn't hear me."
"Ah, you're useless, kid. Get outta here. Tell Bones to come see me."

Meanwhile, Jordan had found the passage to the upper catwalks overlooking the stage. He's exploring them.

Bones comes into the lobby and has a seat. He can't look Jane in the eyes.
"Bones. I have one question for you, okay?"
"Did you attempt to kill Jordan?"
"No. I swear, I didn't know I had anything on me. I didn't come in here with anything on me besides my clothes."
"Then.. what happened?"
"I had just finished talking to Owen about Marble Hornets, so I went to talk to Jordan. We shot the breeze. Then you showed up and I chased a little weird red dot, and next thing I know, there's a bomb that apparently fell out of my damn coat."
"I.. I mean, I believe you, Eric. You're Jordan's best friend. You have every motive not to kill him. But still, I'm worried about him. He nearly died."
"Hey, so did I."
"Yeah, but you're not m--"
Jordan comes running in, shouting "JANE! Jane! You won't believe what I found, holy shit."
Eric and Jane look at him.
"I found a sniper rifle in the catwalks, pointing at the stage."
Jane's eyes widen. "That'd.. that'd explain how Sean got shot since the gun doesn't work, right?"
Eric's eyes also widen. "Dude, and the red dot I saw on the stage. That might have been the sniper's sight!"
Jordan's eyes then widen more. "We were being aimed at?!"
Eric asks to see the sniper rifle.

The catwalks above the stage are in good condition, since the Facebook Theater wasn't made that long ago. They overlook the stage from behind the curtain while remaining adequately hidden.
Resting just out of sight of anyone who might look on from below, peering down into the stage, is a sniper rifle.

Eric grabs and examines the rifle, looking for anything that might give any clues.
He finds one.
"Jordan. Look. On the grip. See that?"
"Yeah, that's... holy shit. No way."
Jane asks what they found. Eric shows her.
It is a circle with an X through it.
".....oh. I know that symbol. What's it mean?"
Jordan turns and begins walking away. "It means we've caught our perp."
Down on the stage, someone had taken the knife out of Sean's body, little to the protagonists' knowledge.

You had gone out to the lobby to see what progress Jane and Jordan had made. Bones has been out there for a while; that girl must really be getting some answers, he thought as he stepped out into the room.
As he approaches the empty table, he hears the door slam shut behind him.
"Hello? Who's there?"

Coming back from the catwalk passageway, just entering the lobby, are Jane, Jordan, and Bones. They hear You and prepare to give him answers.
Then the lights go out. The three stop in their tracks, unsure of what's going on.

You asks once more for a name, who might be turning the lights off. A figure appears behind him, holding a sharp object.
Jane's ready to charge forward.. when they hear a loud "TAKE THAT!" followed by a groan.

Bones goes and finds a light switch, switching it on.
Danny Finnegan, wielding the knife covered in Sean's blood, is lying on the floor, groaning. Fentzy is standing over him; she swiftly takes the knife off of him. "Just who I suspected."

You is startled, to say the least. He asks what's going on.
Everyone else (sans Danny) begins talking. Jane tells them all to "can it and tell it to the audience."

The audience spreads confused murmurs as they see You, Jordan, Jane, Bones walking to the stage. They spread even more as they see Danny being dragged to the stage by Fentzy.

You steps up to the microphone once more.
"I'm sorry for all the delays, ladies and gentlemen. I understand you must be wondering what's going on, who attempted to murder whom, who actually did murder whom. Well, it is my understanding that these folk know the answers. Go right ahead."

Fentzy steps up first and clears her throat.
"Sean was both shot and stabbed, yes, but You made the mistake of assuming it was thegunshot that did him in. I've taken a close look at his body, and with the way the gunshot wound is angled, it looks like it went straight through him at a downwards angle, not passing through anything vital. Therefore, it was the knife that killed him. Someone stabbed Sean in the back on the stage with the curtains down, two hours before the show. Well, that person was none other than Danny Finnegan, who I've got right here.

"See, the knife that was stuck in Sean has an engraving. It's a nine-letter word starting with M, with an e and a c halfway through, and a t at the end. That word? Minecraft. Who's addicted to Minecraft? Danny. Danny was also found just now in the lobby, attempting to murder You. So you ladies and gentlemen in the audience may be wondering why he killed Sean, why he attempted to kill You. Well.... I don't know that just yet. But I bet these three guys here can help us piece the puzzle together."

Jane steps up this time.
"Lemme tell ya what I found out in my investigations, kay? I found out that, first of all, Paul's gun is completely downright impossible to figure out how to work. Second of all, he was given it by Jalani. No idea why."
You interrupts, "Jalani? But he left shortly before the actual meeting began."
"You mean he was actually here?"
"Well, yes. I saw him."
"Damn! This shit's awfully complicated. Anyway, lemme stick to the facts. Third of-- that's what I was on, right? Third of all, and this one's important, I found out how Finny got shot. He says he was up on the stage at the time, thinking about Minecraft, how he made this theater on it."
Fentzy speaks up, "Of course! The bullet that hit Sean! It passed right through him and must have struck Danny in the foot! Talk about a sucky coincidence."
"Right. But we'll get to the gunshot in a bit. First, I want Finny to tell me why he stabbed Sean." She turns to look at Danny.
Danny shakes his head. He's pleading the fifth on this one.
"Fine. Prolong your suffering, bitch. We'll figure this out."

Jordan gets a sudden idea.
"What if we're looking at this all wrong? What if we're not supposed to ask why he killed Sean, but rather.. who he was trying to kill?"
You catches on. "By jove! Of course!"
"It's as You said, it's dark as hell when the curtains are down. I doubt Danny knew who he was actually approaching. He just assumed it was who he wanted to kill."
"But who would he think would theoretically most likely be on the stage, ready for if ever the curtains go up?"
Jane turns pale. She then hugs Jordan.
Jordan gets goosebumps. "Oh. Me. I am a regular here, after all..."
Jane then kicks Danny. "Why the hell do you want to kill Jordan?"
Danny finally opens up. "He's so fucking lucky. He gets to host all kinds of shit on the Facebook Theater. This is one of the most beautiful stages in all of human history, and yet he sticks to only hosting the occasional mediocre comedy act? If I were the regular host, I'd throw awards shows, skits, get several comedians, throw film viewings, every single night! I figured killing him'd be the easiest way to replace him. Since I failed at killing him twice, I settled for You. Which also didn't work."
Jane kicks Danny several times. "That is the stupidest motive I have ever heard for trying to kill someone, seriously!"
The crowd begins to jeer.

Eric looks at Jordan, who looks back. Jordan steps up to the mic.
"We're not done yet, people. Sean was stabbed, yes, but then who shot him? And who framed Bones, trying to kill us both? Well, we also looked into that. You see, up in the catwalks above the stage, there is a sniper rifle, concealed very well. At two separate points tonight, it was under the operation of someone with not entirely the nicest intent. The first was when Sean and Danny were shot. The second was just before the discovery of the bomb. Bones claims to have seen a sniper sight-- a little red dot-- moving towards me.

"Now, that second one can be figured out easily. Someone trying to kill me, most likely after failing the first time. Danny. But then, what of the first shot? What of the bomb? Clearly, we've got a second perpetrator, and I have reason to believe this is no mere accomplice, otherwise Danny wouldn't have been shot. This is a fully independent operation.

"When Bones examined the sniper rifle earlier tonight, he discovered a marking on its grip. It is, simply put, a circle with an X through it. A very common symbol, yes, but bare with me. Before Bones came to talk to me onstage, a man spoke with him about a film series known as Marble Hornets. Throughout that series is something called the Operator symbol. The Operator symbol is, simply put, a circle.. with an X through it!"

Bones steps up. "I'd just like to say that, when this man was finished speaking with me, he hugged me. He put his arm very close to my coat collar. The bomb fell out of my coat, almost as if it wasn't planted very well. You know where I'm going with this, I imagine. Rael, please continue."

"Thank you, Bones. Now, as for the issue of motives, I can't really give one. To any of the crimes this man allegedly commited."

"You don't have to. I'm coming clean."

"Ah, there he is. Ladies and gentlemen, the man we are accusing of attempted murder of, what, three different people? Plus attempted acts of terrorism, what with that bomb. Here he is, Owen Norris!"

Mister Norris steps up onto the stage. He takes the microphone.
"Hi. I'm Owen Norris. I, uh.. while giving as few details as possile, I'm a member of a very, very secret society. We deal in a specialized kind of security. There is a thing out there that stalks and murders people, but it only does so to the people who know about it. See, we go around and find out who knows about this secret thing, and.. we kill them. Why? 'Cause if we don't, it will, and it won't do it as nicely as we do. So we just go around and put people out of their misery. I didn't mean to shoot Sean; I meant to shoot Jalani. I knew from my intelligence reports that Jalani was meeting up with Sean tonight here to discuss some rather.. confidential matters. This was the best opportunity to take down a man who has had Army training.

"What more, Mister Dooling here, as much as I love the guy, he kinda knows about the thing, too. And so does Bones. So I gave Eric that bomb and sent him off to do the duty. What more, Jane also knows about the thing, and she was in the originally-intended vicinity, so.. that would have solved a problem I hadn't considered at the time. So uh, Mister Finnegan murdering Sean was entirely coincidental, as was his attempt to kill Jordan."

Jane speaks up. "Wait, 'thing.' You're talking about the fucking slender man, the internet-made urban legend, aren't you?"
"That is correct, in a way."
"God, why can't people ever kill others for good reasons anymore? The slender man is FAKE, man! He doesn't actually kill people!"
By this point, the crowd is done being patient. They charge onto the stage and pick up Owen and Danny, carrying them out of the theater. The criminals are taken to the police and shit lives happily ever after.

Now we are left with the five people, standing on the stage, relieved that everything is done.
You thanks the four for their help and takes his leave. "I'm never speaking here ever again."
Bones thanks the three for clearing his name and walks off. "That was one hell of a night."
Fentzy thanks the other two for helping out with catching the culprits and leaves. "At least we figured out the truth."
Jane thanks Jordan for whatever it is he did. "Let's get out of this place. Murder scenes are depressing."
Jordan thanks Jane for saving his life with that bomb. "I dunno; I think I might host more stuff here."
They leave.
..and run into You, Bones, and Fentzy at the front door.
You is listening to an urgent-sounding phone call on Bones' phone. The other two are watching, curious.
Jordan and Jane join the group.
You eventually thanks the voice and hangs up. He gives Eric his phone back.
Jordan asks what that was all about.
You has a funny look on his face.

"Jalani was just found dead in the local park. One witness."

-written by Jordan Dooling, characters not exactly used with people's permission.