The Doors || People Are Strange
You tell me.
So let me get this straight:the sight of a humongous meteor suspended in the sky just above our tiny combustible squishable little town is, what, disappointing to you? Were you hoping for better CGI?
[user waits for fifteen minutes for message to go through]
Pretty sure that’s what the word ‘crime’ means, genius.
[user googles ‘black hole fetish’ again, and the search is successful] Honestly, I’d rather it not be. But leave it to humans to humanize and fetishize anything.
Nah….I just think…. Why do it the same way? It’s been done before, clearly, so why not something else? Rebirth dinosaurs.
Thank you, I have never been as enlightened as I have been before in this very, specific moment with you. My entire world feels so much more fulfilled and complete, all it needs now is for the sun to be literally two inches away from my face to put those meteors to shame.
[pm] ‘Come on’, what?
[pm] You not grinning. You’re seriously not grinning, all proud, right now at your screen that you’re right and I’m wrong?
Why. Do you have a black hole fetish?
Is that a thing [message sends as is before he can delete it; user attempts to google ‘black hole fetish’ but gives up after all of his devices repeatedly shut on and off; user then half considers acquiring a pigeon from the air and sending a miniature parcel, eyes soon falling to the step ladder across from him for a good five minutes before deciding the effort is not worth it]
[new public message] That’s illegal.
There were weeks that pretended to give you a smattering of free time, and weeks that grabbed you by the throat and dragged you through the mud, screaming into your ear for you to keep up. And this particular week had gone one step further, not even screaming but only glaring silently when Eloise didn’t do as it wished. With Brett monopolising her free time (or was it her monopolising his? She wasn’t sure, and honestly she didn’t mind either way), her only outing that hadn’t involved walking to and from work had been a pathetically brief feeding venture at the first convenient place she remembered, and even that didn’t have the usual charms.
By Saturday, she was going stir-crazy.
After a night of tossing and turning, she found herself slipping out of bed not too long before dawn, immediately feeling guilty for leaving withough waking Brett to let him know, and left a scribbled note to reassure him of her whereabouts. For his sake, she hoped he’d still be asleep by the time she got back. If he woke up… well, sometimes you needed to go on a damn walk. Surely he’d understand.
Eloise was almost out the door by the time her eyes fell on the decidedly dusty camera and tripod sitting in the corner. She slowed to a halt, another complicated tangle of loneliness, guilt and resentment working through her. As she slowly hefted the camera bag Fiona had given her for Christmas, she wondered idly if she could feasibly self-diagnose as having abandonment issues. For a kid who’d been left on the proverbial doorstep with no explanation, wouldn’t that just fit so neatly? Before she knew it, her hands were closing on the strap and she was out the door. She’d enjoyed photography long before Fiona Hernandez had started encouraging her in it, and she was damn sure she’d enjoy it a long time after, too.
Brisk air and a brisk pace. It didn’t take her long for her feet to carry her along the river, down to Kingsley Park and beyond, towards that outcropping of rock she was certain had a grisly history of its own, with how dramatically it loomed over the crushing waves. But the view of the ocean was blurred today, and the waves below muffled by the sheet of fog that seemed to blanket everything in a haze.
Tripod spread and camera mounted, Eloise found herself grinning as she peered through the viewfinder and fiddled with the buttons, her sour mood already lightening that little bit that came from being out in the open, by herself, smack in the middle of a positively haunting landscape. She lost track of time as the sun came creeping through the haze, bathing the neutral grey in golden light. Though it meant that night-time was officially over and her invulnerability had come to an end, Eloise didn’t even pay it any mind, only taking photo after photo of the misty sunrise over the sea, basking in the early sun washing over her skin and the almost ostentatious trill of birdsong from each and every direction.
…At least until a different sound broke her concentration, and Eloise looked up, brow furrowing as what sounded like a set of running footsteps approaching. She straightened, turning to face the path, her heartbeat picking up. Her hand reached into her bag discreetly, cradling her taser. As much as she was convinced she could handle anything that showed up this time of day, as much as she hadn’t dwelled on the dangers of going out so early in the morning by herself, she couldn’t help but worry, just a little.
But the figure that came jogging onto the path was familiar, and Eloise narrowed her eyes. Him? What was he doing there? Then her eyes widened. Her mind flashed to an online conversation she’d barely taken seriously and had all but forgotten about already. had forgotten entirely, actually. Eloise groaned to herself and had to resist the urge to smack her palm against her face. Still keeping her hand on her taser, she tried to give Reed a more friendly smile, instead. “Morning, officer. Just out for a jog, I take it?”
Despite its reputation, Hanging Rock truly was a beautiful place to visit and spend some time at; and Reed had thought that until the first wail broke out and resonated throughout the open air, disappearing right above the lapping ocean. It was early, barely even dawn, and he stopped short of the cliff’s drop-off as he overlooked the rest of the town from up high; what happened here, historically, was awful but the wails surely had to have belonged to the wind. It whistled, it made all sorts of noises…. Then again, he wasn’t so confident in that answer anymore. Not with what he keeps learning about this town, anyway.
By rise of the sun, Reed had began jogging again after his brief pitstop; he enjoyed sunrises, but it was the sunsets he missed — spending too much time down in the basement, working, to poke his head out in time before it was dark. And soon, with fall and winter upon them, the nights would become longer. Sometimes he wished he could make more time in a day instead of busying his mind with things he, hopefully, won’t have to worry about come retirement.
And he thinks about that a lot while he jogged: what his life would be like in the next few decades. He only had so long left and time was getting away from him, work made it easy to forget how tangible all of this really was, and jogging during quiet times like these – when the town was asleep – were starting to become few and far between.
He was near the Cave of Voices when one stuck out to him and he snapped his head that direction, vaguely familiar — like he heard it before and it was possible he had, in passing or on some television show, but when he looked, he saw a just as vaguely familiar young woman. E… Eloise, was it? Or Evelyn? Evanna? Or Emily? Not sure, he stopped in his tracks and grinned invitingly enough, approaching her.
Officer. He’ll never get used to be calling that and variants thereof, with his surname attached or not; Reed few times wanted to say he was just some guy in forensics, just another basement lab rat, but his role in Ashkent was slightly different — an added duty was attached, though minimally, and that had earned him the name, as well as a badge and…a Glock 22 (which always made his heart thrum differently when it was around him, anywhere in his peripheral and attached to his hip).
With a glance down at his body, Reed wanted to make sure his workout attire wasn’t weird in appearance. It was loose enough, which is how he liked it, but sometimes that could make for wardrobe disasters. But, fortunately, fabric wasn’t caught in any weird crevices or positioned to make him look like a weirdly shaped man.
“Eloise,” He echoed her tone, grinning still before nodding, “I am, and yourself?” A glimpse at the camera, “Photography?”
After an inhale, body feeling refreshed from the crisp morning air, Reed placed his hands loosely on his hips and surveyed the surrounding area. “Great picturesque place to practice photography,” He said kindly, “You can…almost forget about what happened here years ago through photos, some probably wouldn’t even know what happened here…” It was a musing, a thought that got away from him the longer he spoke. Pictures were truly deceiving, in focal length and masking history.
Another inhale and this time he turned his head back around again to face her, “Were you also the young lady I spoke to online about the Slenderman?” He asked, sounding more doubtful by the second. He didn’t want to sound presumptuous in that statement and was worried he might have.
[pm] I’m not grinning, I don’t know what you’re talking about.
But in all seriousness, we will make it out of this and Ashkent isn’t going to be obliterated.
[pm] Oh, come on.
Have you— Are you also looking for the items?
Well, the weather forecast certainly didn’t predict this.
Anyone own a really big liquor cabinet? I can pay.
Why am I still
We knew it had to get worse, why didn’t I just
I should go. Just stuff Brett into a really big suitcase and drive away The cars aren’t I don’t own a really big suitc Fuck
Also, does anyone have a really big suitcase they want to sell ASAP?
It’d be cooler if this was what the inside of a blackhole looked like. I honestly think it’s a missed opportunity.
Clearly, whatever did this has enough power to stop time, so they could’ve transported us— Wait, that already happe Nevermind
Jokes aside, why do you need a really big suitcase?
Have been listening to this song a lot today.
[pm] I still wish you weren’t but I’ll admit I was wrong. Let’s just hope we all can save the world in time? Well, I mean…our world. The town’s world. The town.
[pm] [user screenshots message]
I’m sure we can! This town has gone through tons before, we’ll manage this one as well.
…………….How wide are you grinning right now?