Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Okay some of the pain's gone so maybe now I can

No, fuck it.  Still hurts too much.  Gonna get Poe to explain sometime soon.

Don't worry.  Just my finger.  Which is broken.

Motherfucker that O key is common.

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Meeting Big Brother


Um.  Well.

Okay.  I guess I should start.  Just get all of this out.

Big Brother gave me an address to meet him.  A church.  A big cathedral.  "I hope you don't mind; they just have a certain feel to them, you know?"  Of course.

Anyway, I got out to the church.  It was empty, but unlocked.  Big city like this, you'd think that churches would stay open and at least partially manned 24/7, but...I don't know.  Maybe he rented it or something?  I don't know, and it's not important.

Anyway, I entered the sanctuary, and there he was.  Sitting at the far end, at some sort of big ornate chair.  Sitting it in sideways, legs over the armrest.  Clapping slowly.

"Welcome, my friend!" he called out.  "Welcome!"

He was probably around my age, give or take a few years.  Fairly short, too.  Dressed in these big fancy deep purple robes. Black hair in need of a trim, and combined with the soul patch, he looked like a massive tool.  Lounging on the chair casually like he didn't have a care in the world.  The way he held himself, I was surprised there wasn't a loincloth-clad servant or two there feeding him grapes or fanning him with a giant palm frond.  He stood as I approached, and as the robes shifted, I caught a glance of what he was wearing underneath.  Jeans and a t-shirt.  Wonderful.

He held his hand out, giving me a smug grin.  I didn't shake it.  "Well, well, well, it certainly is an honor to finally meet, isn't it, Alan?"

Alan.  He called me Alan.  Why the hell would he call me Alan?

"The Messenger," I told him.

He shook his head and chuckled.  "Alan, Alan, Alan...why are you so opposed to your real name?  After all, we both know it already, so why not use it?  Oh, but I'm sorry!  You don't know who I am yet, do you?  You call me 'Big Brother,' and I think that it's time you use the name I go by now.  You may call me...."  And here he paused for a big sweeping bow.  "...Eternity."

He looked up and grinned, expecting some sort of response.  ", I guess?  Look, can we skip the pleasantries?  I've got questions."

"Skip the pleasantries?  But Alan, the root of the word is 'pleasant.'  Are you against pleasant things?"

"Don't call me that."

"I'm sorry, does it bother you when I use your name?  It's just shorter than 'Messenger.'  I hope you don't mind if I continue to use it.  Let's call it my fee for answering your questions."

Smarmy bastard.

"Look.  What the hell do you want?  Why'd you bring me here?"

"Because you deserve to know."

"Know what?"

He stared off in the distance, putting on a thoughtful look.  "Hmmm...ask me something else.  Not quite ready to answer that one quite yet."

"Fine.  Why did you install video surveillance?  And where are you hiding the cameras?"

He burst out laughing.  "Oh, Alan.  Your paranoia is simply delicious.  There aren't any cameras.  Not now.  They sort of come and go.  That's why you couldn't find them.  There haven't been cameras in your room since before you checked.  And I don't know why you're asking me at all.  After all, I'm not the one who installed them."

"'re not?"

"Of course not.  I just had some agents do it for me.  I can get a lot of people to do a lot of things for me, actually.  In fact, I' do I put this?  I'm well-known.  Well respected.  A 'big deal.'  I'm pretty sure you're only hearing my name for the first time, but all your friends or co-workers or whatever exactly you want to call them have probably heard of me."

I'll admit that that threw me.  Wasn't expecting someone well-known.  I sort of choked on my response a bit.

"Cat got your tongue, Alan?  You're...meaning to ask what I do, correct?"  I nodded.  "Well, I'm what I guess you'd call an 'Oracle.'  I'm not exactly the highest-ranked person, but even the highest-ranked sort of rely on me.  After all, when was the last time your Boss told you anything?  Someone has to understand and decipher the will of the Slender Man, don't they?  Someone a bit more...specially attuned to him."

"The...the Slender Man?"

He laughed.  "Oh, I'm sorry, Alan!  Would you feel more comfortable if I called him 'Father' or 'the Tall One' or 'He That Is' or something along those lines?  But why should I?  After all, that implies fear, respect, or awe.  And me?  What reason do I have to fear him?  What reason do any of us have to fear him.  Most of us--well, excluding your Annabel, of course--have never had any reason to.  He doesn't care about us.  Why do you think he agreed to that 'deal' you made with him so easily.  He probably just doesn't care enough about your brother Kyle to bother him.  He could turn on us for any second if we anger him for some reason.  But if he was going to rip me to pieces, he'd have done it already.  What reason do I have to fear him?  What reason do I have to respect him?  What reason do I have to be in awe?"

"So then...if he doesn't care about us, what fuck is all this for?  Why am I working for him?"

He gave me a smile and sighed.  "Looks like I put too much faith in your intelligence.  You don't get your orders from the Slender Man directly, do you?  They get passed down through other people whose job it is to pass down those orders.  And didn't I tell you that I'm the one who interprets his orders?  This little cult--and it is a cult--needs me to do anything.  Are you catching on now?"

"Hard as it is for your ego to accept it, let's assume that you just suck at explaining things."

"Ah, Alan, playing at the tough guy is unbecoming of you, especially considering just who it is you're talking to. But I'll humor you.  Now, I'm sure you've heard the term 'proxy.'  All these people using it to describe anyone on Ol' Slendy's side.  It's almost easy to forget that it's an actual word with an actual meaning.  Checked out Merriam-Webster's website before I came and memorized a definition for your sake.  "A person authorized to act for another."  One that works better is the concept of a proxy server, something I'm sure you're familiar with.  Going through another server--or in this sake, person--to do something."

"Yeah, it's kind of a dumb term in my opinion.  I wouldn't really say he controls me."

Eternity laughed.  "You don't get it, do you, Alan?  You're a proxy.  As much as you might dislike the term, you're a proxy.  Only thing don't work for the Slender Man at all.  You're not his proxy.  You're mine."

I, naturally, had my snappiest response ready.


"Alan, do you really think that a being who just might be omniscient and invincible has any pressing need for a person who hacks blogs?  I told you, I run this place.  I'm the one he talks to.  I'm the one who tells everyone what his will is.  These people--they think that I'm interpreting the orders of their god, willing to carry out his every move.  But who's to say I'm interpreting anything?  These people have it on faith alone."  He spread his arms wide.  "As far as I'm concerned...I'm their god.  By the way, Alan, you're staggering.  You might want to take advantage of that pew and sit."

I sat.  "So that's what this is all about, huh?  This is all a farce?  All of our lives...they're just some game to you?"

He started fidgeting with his fingernails, looking at them disinterestedly  "If you choose to see it that way--yes.  Yes, it's all a game.  I like to think of it more like seizing an opportunity, though.  You can't tell me that, if you were in my position, you wouldn't take advantage of it.  I'm sure you've been tempted to hack a blog now and then to twist their events to your satisfaction now and then.  Don't answer that, by the way.  We both know the answer already, even if you won't admit it."

"So...what now?  You know that I record pretty much everything now, right?  I started recording this from the moment I walked in.  And even if I didn't, I'd still remember enough to expose this."

"Oh, naturally.  And I'm sure everyone will believe you, too.  But really...what good would it do?  After all, how much of what I say is the Slender Man's word, and how much is my own?  There's a reason they chose me as an Oracle in the first place.  And no one would dare say that I'm making entirely selfish choices.  After all, whatever I do gets the job done, doesn't it?  And the fact that I'm not dead says a lot.  If the Slender Man were really all that opposed to what I was doing, do you think I'd still be here?  Maybe he trusts my word and I've been ordained as some sort of prophet.  Maybe the prophet, like I'm his right hand man."  He shrugged, giving me another one of his smug grins.  "And besides, ignoring all of that, if they decided to somehow dispose of me, where would they find another Oracle?  The whole cult--and yes, it is a cult--in this area sort of sprung up around me.  I'm indispensable.  So what now?  Well, now we part.  Go our separate ways.  I'll see you later, Alan.  Until then...have fun."

And that's...what we did.  I just left.  Walked out as he chuckled.

The last seven months of my life have been a lie. 

What the hell am I supposed to do now?

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Things are calming down some.  Unfortunately, they've been a little too calm and quiet.  There's been a heavy silence hanging over the apartment, and I think it largely has to do with a comment Screwtape left a few days ago in regards to Poe's role in that whole incident with the Nee-chan freak-out: 

"Messenger, you can promote your perception of things as much as you want to, but let me remind you that Raven was of absolutely no help. She caught Nee-chan's attention for perhaps a second and then did nothing else. Do not let your bias towards her and against me affect you. You know as well as I did that she did nothing but take up space that night. She could have at very least spoken to Nee-chan to attempt to calm her down. Only fitting, since dolls are quite well known for being able to comfort children."

I really don't want to admit it, but...well, he has a point.  I know it, and I think Poe knows it, and it's really just been a source of tension.

That's what today was for.  To relieve some of that tension.  For more than just us, too.  Theta showed up and dropped Nee-chan off, telling us to keep an eye on her.  I guess she's got a bit more free reign now.  Anyway, she was...she was trying to be smiley and cheerful.  But she wasn't.  I could tell it was forced.

So I spent an hour or two watching something called "Lucky Star" in Japanese, for her sake.

I didn't really like it (I couldn't really follow it, but I'm pretty sure that there wasn't much to follow, and it's quite possibly the dumbest show I've ever seen), but I guess this is about one of the most normal things I've done in a while, so I'm not complaining.  It seemed to improve everyone's mood some.  Nee-chan gave me a hug afterward.  Called me "Messi-kun," which she's never done before.  It's always been "Messenger-san."  Asked Poe what it meant, and she said that it meant Nee-chan started thinking of me as a friend.

And things seem a bit better in more ways at one.  As we watched, Poe just kind of...leaned up against my shoulder.  Like...I don't know. felt like, after a heavy silence, we just...connected.  Got closer.  Things feel better now.  A sort of invisible rift mended.  Although I recognize that's usually a gesture of affection, and I...well, I mean, I know there's...we know what the situation is and everything, and it just seems...I don't know if it was right or not.

Whatever.  I'm dwelling on this.  I shouldn't be.  Most important part of the post now.

Big Brother contacted me.  Told me he'd call me again on Monday and invite me to where he was.  I'll have something up on Tuesday.  If not, expect me to be dead blah blah blah I'm sure I'll be back.  Don't worry.

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Monday, October 10, 2011

Star Burning Out

Well, Morningstar's gone, if you hadn't already heard.  Like the Observe and Terminate report, this one's already been covered better than I could.  Morningstar seemed to have expected it may have been coming, and he got up a post on his own blog.  That first link there seems to match up fairly well with what our agents found when they investigated the scene.  Only one real unanswered thing that remains is the matter of the truck that crashed into the warehouse and blew up, killing Morningstar in the process.  Seemed a bit too coincidental, if you ask me.  I don't know.  Maybe it was some sort of suicide attempt.  Who knows?  Maybe he felt trapped or thought he would lose and decided to end it himself.  That'd be like him: ensuring a dramatic, over-the-top fiery death for himself: the dramatic, over-the-top Saturday morning cartoon villain.

But that's all just speculation.

So who was Morningstar?  Well, it's hard to say.  Was he, as some claim, a broken lost soul, forced to serve The Boss against his will?  Was he, as others will suggest, an irredeemable monster who was only playing at switching sides?  Or was he a bit of both?  How much of the monster was him, and how much was out of his control?  It's hard to say for sure.  Out of respect to my former roommate (who I guess had some sort of crush on him) I'll withhold my personal opinions of the kid.

But I suppose it really doesn't matter anymore, does it?

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Everyone else is completely batshit, too

First of all, check the Observe and Terminate report out so that it doesn't get lost in the shuffle.  I'd hate to write something for everyone and then not have anyone read it.

Done that?  Good.  Now let's go back to talking about how I've somehow ended up in a mental institution without wardens.

I decided that I'd go down to Screwtape and Nee-chan's room today after gathering some more information for the upcoming reports to check on Nee-chan and maybe see if I could arrange an interview with Theta.  Screwtape was attempting to clean up while Theta and Nee-chan were sitting on the remains of the couch.

Waved as I entered.  Asked Nee-chan how she was doing.  She just sort of crossed her arms and glared at me.

"Better," Theta told me.  "Still unstable, though.  Not to leave until she can control her emotions."

She stood up and started screaming at him about how she was in control and how she had to go and kill Mitch (the person who killed Morningstar apparently) because she was a bully and she kept going on and getting more and more agitated.

That's when Theta stood up.  Looked at her.  She started to trail off, fear in her eyes.  "You are not to leave this room," he told her.  And then he backhanded her.  Just...just hit a nineteen-year-old girl.  Smacked her down into the couch.  Screwtape glanced over, but otherwise didn't even react.

"But I have to," she said, looking up at him and sobbing.  He pulled her up, threw her to the floor.  "No," he told her, "you don't."  Picked her up, dragged her to a back room.  Shut the door behind him.

What the fuck.

I tried talking to Screwtape some.  Asked him what the hell was going on with that.  He said that it was just how Theta handled things.  Nothing out of the ordinary for him.  It didn't seem to bother him.  He said that it worked well enough and with someone as volatile as Nee-chan, and if he could control her, what business of it was his.

There was crying coming from the back room.  I didn't know how to handle it.  Screwtape didn't seem to care, and that made me a bit uncomfortable.  I...just left.  I don't know.  I feel now like I should have done something.  But what could I have done?  I can't exactly report this to the authorities.  That compromises everyone involved in this.  Brings in unnecessary investigation.  I can't exactly step in, considering that Nee-chan would probably be able to hold her own better than I could.  I could try to figure out who Glasses and Ginger are and get their help, but they probably wouldn't be able to hold their own against Theta either.  Screwtape wouldn't step in.

And then there's the fact that I never really expected I'd be worried about Nee-chan, either.  I don't know.  What the hell else goes on around me that I don't know about?  I mean, I'd probably notice if Screwtape was somehow abusing Poe, but I guess there might be stuff going on that she isn't telling me?  I just don't know anymore.

Almost enough to make me wish I was up against The Boss himself instead sometimes.  Almost.

Anyway, Morningstar and Maduin's reports should be up soon.  Morningstar's tomorrow for sure, Maduin's within the week, hopefully.

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Termination Observed

This is a report that's a bit different than the others in that I'm not announcing the death of a person, but the death of an entire division.  The Slender Man division of the Paranormal Termination Consortum has been wiped out nearly completely.  You can check out that link to Observe and Terminate, where the sole survivor provides a pretty good report of his own.  Much better than I could have done.

I guess I don't have any strong feelings about this one way or the other.  You guys know as well as any that they were a blessing as well as a curse to pretty much anybody.  Seemed like some of them could never quite decide whether they wanted to kill everyone related to The Boss or not, it sounded like their boss decided he wanted to work for my Boss at the end there, and that whole "dimensional bleeding" thing with the space-time cloning and whatnot sounds like it fucked pretty much everything up for everyone.

And on top of that, they couldn't even do what their department was designed to do.  If they couldn't kill The Boss, the odds for anyone else managing look pretty slim.  All they managed to do was fuck everything up.  They tried, though.  You've gotta give them credit for trying.

Well, with the Slender Man division completely wiped out, The Boss probably isn't going to be bothering the PTC anymore.  B2, if you read this, good luck in whatever it is you're doing now.  You have my best wishes.

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Saturday, October 8, 2011

My Ex-roommate is Completely Batshit

I think the title pretty much sums up the situation.

Earlier today, Screwtape stopped by.  Knocked on the door.  Seemed pretty urgent.  I opened the door and let him in.

"Messenger, Raven," he said, "Follow me to my apartment.  We need your help."

"What's going on?"

He looked at me and shook his head.  "You still know so little about your old roommate.  Just please, follow me."

So we followed him down the hall to the room.  Last time I had been there was...a while ago, I guess.  I might be remembering this wrong, but I don't think I'd been down to the room since that night Caper died.  But I don't want to get into that now because it brings up all sorts of bad memories and it's not important anyway.

As we got closer, I heard yelling and screaming.  Always a good sign.  Screwtape opened the door to reveal the apartment.  Remember how when The Boss tossed Caper around, the apartment was kind of a mess afterwards?  Well, evidently, he's more careful than Nee-chan, because the place was ripped up.  Nee-chan was storming around the apartment, pounding on walls, slashing at the furniture with a knife, throwing things was bad.

Poe and I just sort of stood there in shock for a few seconds.  "When she found out about Morningstar's death she was...upset," Screwtape said.

There were these two guys about her age, maybe a little older, sort of scrambling around the apartment, unsure of how to deal with the situation, sort of shouting at each other.  Kid with glasses and a ginger.  Ginger told Glasses Kid to grab her and hold her back.  Glasses Kid shouted back how he was trying but "she's waving around a freakin' knife, man!"  He ducked a second later as a drinking glass shattered against the wall above his head.

Screwtape turned to us.  "Raven, try talking to her to get her attention.  Messenger, we'll get behind her and grab her arms.  You take left arm, I'll take right arm.  Right arm first so that the knife is out of commission.  I'll let the other two know to grab her legs once we have the arms restrained."

I just nodded.  He sounded like he knew what he was doing.  As Nee-chan walked into the bathroom and started shouting at the mirror, Screwtape briefed Glasses and Ginger.  And I just sat there for about three minutes as she screamed at herself.  During those three minutes, between bouts of "holy shit I am dealing with someone who has gone off the deep end," something occurred to me.

"Screwtape," I yelled, "Why is Poe the one distracting Nee-chan?  You're using her as bait, aren't you?"

"Theta hasn't arrived, and she has the strongest connection with Nee-chan," he said.  "Plus, she's the most expendable of us." 

Right.  Of course.  Bastard.  She was standing right there, too.  But Nee-chan chose that moment to come out of the bathroom, so Poe just sort of...called her name, I guess.  Said something to briefly distract her.  Worked well enough.  Screwtape got ahold of her right arm, and got her to drop the knife in a matter of seconds, while I tried to grab onto her left arm.  Her flailing hit me in the face a few times.  Shins are bruised now from the kicking.  Glasses took a foot to the face as he tried to hold her down.  We got her on the floor and just sort of pinned her down.  The whole time she just kept yelling about how she was going to "fucking kill that stupid bitch."  Those words made up probably about 50%  of what she said, actually (the rest of it consisted largely of "Morningstar," and about five Japanese words I don't remember and didn't understand), although it was mostly incoherent.

We sat there for ten minutes.  Ten minutes of her screaming, sobbing, and struggling underneath us.  Screwtape and Ginger seemed to know what they were doing, but Glasses and I were kind of holding on for dear life.  And Poe just sort of stepped back into a corner of the room and froze up.  But Nee-chan would just sort of cycle between screaming, sobbing, and then falling silent and just breathing heavily.  And then screaming again, her torso and head writhing as she tried to get free.  It's...I don't even know how to describe it.  I can't do it justice.  She had four people pinning her down and I still felt like she was the one in control.

But at the end of the ten minutes, Theta showed up.  Looked at Screwtape, and said just a few words.  "Did you tell Jacob?"  Screwtape nodded, and he just responded with "good," before walking over, reaching down, and pressing somewhere on Nee-chan's neck.  Pressure point or something, I guess, because she lost consciousness almost instantly.  Screwtape and Ginger stepped back.  It took me a bit longer to feel safe letting go.  Glasses was still gripping her leg, and his face looked like it was going white at that point.  But I guess I shouldn't point fingers, since I probably wasn't looking much better.  Theta picked her up, hoisted her over a shoulder, and carried her to a back room (her bedroom I guess, probably).  He came out, turned to Screwtape, and told him that he'd be staying for a few days.  Screwtape didn't raise any objections or seem even remotely bothered by announcement. 

Anyway, Screwtape turned to the rest of us.  "Thank you," he said.  "You've been a great help tonight.  Except for you, Raven, but I didn't expect you to be pulling your weight at this point."  I swear, Theta was the only thing keeping me from beating his ass into oblivion.

But yeah, no reports today (I've got Morningstar's to write up now, too) because I've been too busy with all that shit.  Sorry to let you all down.  I'll try to get one or two of them up tomorrow.

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Friday, October 7, 2011

A Summary of Events Thus Far

All right, I guess my blog's getting a bit long and it's exactly the most episodic thing out there.  I guess I should provide a CliffNotes version for those of you who didn't want to bother reading the actual assignment.

Hi.  Call me The Messenger (or Messi, for those of you who are too lazy to type the whole thing out--Messi, not Messy or Mess).  I work for someone I call The Boss.  You might know him by a variety of names.  The Slender Man seems to be the most standard.  I'm a 27-year-old hacker who acts, as you may expect, as a messenger.  I write up reports of the deceased and post them to their blogs.  I'm not going to bother linking you, but I've got a tag on the left side of the page for "Reports."  Feel free to click that to get an example of what I'm talking about.

Anyway, before you get all judgmental,  I'm working for The Boss for two reasons.  The first is that, simply put, it's safer.  Why run when I can get on his good side instead?  The second is that I'm kind of here in my brother Kyle's stead.  I asked him to, if I work for him, leave my brother and those around him alone.  I don't know why, but his answer so far seems to be "sure, why the hell not?"  So I'm doing this largely for my brother's sake.  He and his friends are writing and filming one of those vlog things, incidentally.  I actually think that they're just going through a few small rewrites now and are going to start shooting soon.  I give him maybe two more months before he loses interest.

Anyway, started working here, and I got to know some of the others who work for him.  The first guy I met (a guy calling himself Hyde) was also the first report I wrote up.  The first two I met who actually stayed alive long enough for me to get to know them were two partners called Caper and Poe.  Caper referred to himself and Poe as "Trackers," or people whose job it was to discern and monitor the locations of runners.  I got to know Caper fairly well.  He was the type of guy who you could never take seriously, probably because he never gave anyone the impression that he took anything seriously himself.  Poe, meanwhile, was this quiet and withdrawn girl always dressed in what she describes as "gothic lolita" clothing who always seemed to be trailing after Caper.

Around this time I started interviewing people just so I could figure out what exactly I had gotten myself into and why exactly I was one of the "bad guys."  Tried interviewing Caper a couple of times but never got a straight answer out of him.  Talked to a hollowed or hallowed or husk or whatever you guys call them calling himself William.  Several of them, actually.  They lost their identities so they tried taking on a collective one.  Interviewed a youth calling himself Alex.  Never really saw him after that, so I decided to check around.  Turns out he died a few months back.  No big ceremony surrounding his death or anything.  That's just the way things go around here.

Anyway, things really started getting hectic around here around the time Caper died.  He and Poe told me that he had just destroyed evidence that kept the Hunters (the people who finish the Trackers' jobs) from being able to locate her.  I later found out that he had actually also killed one of said Hunters, but I'll get to that when I get to that.

Poe didn't really know where else to go at that point, so she came over and we got drunk together to try to forget.  Because that's how adults handle their problems.  They turn to alcohol.  Started to get to know her for a bit.  Then she cut off all contact for a while to mourn.  Started up a blog of her own (linked in the sidebar on the left) as a coping mechanism.

We've got a guy funding us so that we have a place to live and don't starve to death.  His name's Jacob.  He's a stockbroker who decided that he could part with some of his money if the alternative was death threats from what he views as a cult.  He's actually also a really nice guy, in my opinion.  Anyway, he also deals with living and working arrangements.  He decided that I needed a roommate, and that Poe needed a new roommate/partner.  So I ended up rooming with an unstable Japan-obsessed teenage girl calling herself Nee-chan (who I later found out was a replacement for the Hunter Caper killed), and Poe ended up with a psychologically abusive fanatic called Screwtape.  Poe couldn't stand rooming with him, so we convinced Jacob to let her and Nee-chan trade rooms.  Now Nee-chan's living with Screwtape and Poe's living with me.  And I guess Poe and I have sort of started to develop a bit of an unofficial relationship or something?  I don't know, it's complicated.

Speaking of Poe.  Basically, Screwtape's kind of been harassing her, I guess?  There was this old boyfriend of hers or something named Donovan who found her after I interviewed her and he recognized her story.  And now he thinks that he needs to be playing the hero and should come and "save her."  So I should probably be keeping an eye on him.  I'm surrounded by enough crazy as is.  I don't need Don Juan adding to that.

Anyway, shortly after all that, I started getting these tapes from this unknown sender (I've dubbed him "Big Brother" for the sake of giving him a name) with some purpose I can't entirely figure out.  The tapes tend to show the more negative sides of my co-workers.  The first five were of Nee-chan in various stages of batshit fucking insane, the second two displayed Caper's murderous side (this is when and how I found out why exactly he was killed), and one showing Poe as...well, it showed me that she didn't exactly willingly sign up to work for The Boss.

And now I may finally see some closure to this, because Big Brother's wants to meet in person.  But before all that happens, I've got some work to do.  A lot of people died recently.  I've got three reports to write up (Maduin, Morningstar, and the Slender Man division of the PTC) and work is taking priority.

And now you're caught up with the present.  Congratulations.  Have a fucking cookie.

God I'm tired.

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-

Monday, October 3, 2011

Meeting Theta

This Occupy Wall Street thing, huh?  Crazy, huh?  A bunch of dumbasses (some of whom wear masks) making demands when they don't even know what their demands are, and another bunch of dumbasses brutally opposed to this first group taking the law into their own hands.  It all seems marginally familiar somehow.  And then there's me, not really choosing to take either side.  Wow, I'm really forcing this metaphor, aren't I?

But really, Jacob's been pretty stressed about all this, since these protests affect him more or less directly.  Or they would if the protesters decided why exactly they're sitting out there.  They decide that they're all going to take up space on Wall Street to fight corruption, but when people finally say "okay, fine, what do you fucking want?" they just kind of go "um...we...don't want corporate greed."  Oh.  Okay.  That's a noble cause.  I can get behind that cause.  Just one question--how the hell exactly do you go around changing that?  "Hey, it'd be really nice if you people completely stopped loving money!  Do that and we'll go away!"

But I'm not here to discuss politics and the economy, because I tend to make myself look like an idiot when I do.  I'm here to talk about what's been going on the last few days.  As usual, Poe and Nee-chan had their Saturday anime session.  Only thing that makes this time notable is that Nee-chan brought Theta over for a visit.

Theta is...well, built like a bodybuilder isn't a good phrase, because while he's one of the most muscular people I've ever met, he's not really that stocky.  Built more like a gymnast or a stuntman, I guess.  Tall.  Bald.  Necklace of Theta symbols (θ) tattooed around his neck.  He walked in and just sort of stood there, as if perfectly content to remain standing in one spot.

"Uh...hey," I said.  "I'm The Messenger."

He looked at me and gave me a slight nod.  "Theta."  Notably deep voice.

"You...need some coffee or a glass of water or something?"


"You...wanna at least sit down?"

He gave another slow, slight nod.  "Thank you."

I led him to the kitchen, sat down opposite him.  Tried to talk to him some.  Theta is...not a conversationalist.

"So, you're Nee-chan's partner, right?  The two of you are Hunters, right?  What exactly do you do?"

"Hunt."  He said it in dead seriousness, though maybe with a hint of confusion, like he couldn't understand why I'd ask such a stupid question.  Didn't bother asking him to elaborate.

"So where do you live, then?  I know you don't live with Nee-chan."

"Fortunately.  She accidentally killed her last partner.  Living about half an hour away.  Lived there with Helios until her partner killed him."  He nodded over at Poe.  I attempted to change the subject.

"So what exactly do you think of Nee-chan?"

"Nice girl.  Dedicated.  Good at her job."  A pause.  "Glad I'm not living with her."  I chuckled a bit.  He didn't.  I stopped pretty quickly.

Theta didn't stay long.  I'm kind of glad he didn't, as he's kind of got this intimidating presence.  He rarely speaks, and when he's not speaking, he looks deep in thought.  It worries me, not knowing what he's thinking about.  Nee-chan left later, enthusiastically waving goodbye.  Poe told me that I should watch with them next time, or at least pretend to watch.  I might, but I'm not watching anything in Japanese.  Nee-chan's going to have to understand that.

And of course, Big Brother decided to call me yesterday.

BB: Messenger!  How nice to hear your voice again!

M: So Theta's big and silent and intimidating.  Your point?

BB: Well of course you don't know what my point is.  That's why I've called.

M: So what is it about Theta?  So he's kind of creepy.

BB: I wouldn't go with "creepy."  More along the lines of "heartless."  Complements Nee-chan quite nicely, actually.  Nee-chan's overly emotional.  Wears her heart on her sleeve, so to speak.  Theta?  You can never quite tell what he's thinking, can you?  Nee-chan's stupidly innocent and naive.  Can't quite seem to grasp the consequences of her actions?  And Theta?  Theta understands, he just doesn't care.  He doesn't have some convoluted sense of loyalty and duty like Screwtape.  Doesn't second-guess himself like Caper.  Doesn't really have a reason to be on the side he is like you or Poe.  He's just here, doing Father's bidding.  Try interviewing him.  I'm sure that whenever you ask "why," he'll just answer "because."

M: So he's mysterious.

BB: Not mysterious.  Emotionless.  Heartless.  Cruel.  Very devoted to what he does.  Practices a lot.

M: Practices killing people?  Like down at the shooting range or something?

BB: Shooting--really, Mr. Funeral, you know how strict the gun laws are.  No, Theta doesn't carry a gun.

M: Then how the hell do you practice something like that?

BB: Well, there are some particular people he views as...disposable, shall we say?  People who aren't really people anymore?  Can't really say yes or no either way?

M: Wait, what?

BB: Oh, wait, sorry, that's an uncomfortable subject for you, isn't it?  Your girlfriend used to be one.

M: You know she's not my girlfriend.

BB: All but name, Messenger, all but name.  But while we're on the subject of Miss Poe, why don't we talk about what she hasn't been telling you?

M: I don't know what you're talking about.

BB: Well of course you wouldn't know, she hasn't been telling you.  You know her partner Screwtape, right?

M: Of course I do.

BB: Well he's a lot different than Caper.  A lot more overbearing.  If you had a mind to, you could probably call it harassment.  It maybe is, considering how much he hates her.  You see, he's not exactly too fond of "Father's dolls," as he calls them.  Thinks that the "Chosen" are the people Father's choosing to build a better society.  The "dolls," on the other hand, oh, they're being punished, because clearly they're the worst of the worst.

M: Sounds like you don't agree with his assessment.

BB: Maybe I don't.  But maybe I do.  I'm just trying to be neutral here.  Let you form your own opinions.  Chances are, he's must as right, if not moreso, than you.  But anyway, can you see why he might have, shall we say...problems working with someone who he thinks deserves to be a brainwashed mindless slave working among the elite?

M: You're an asshole.

BB: You want the truth, don't you, Messi?  I'm just giving you that inside scoop that reporters like you love so dearly.

M: I'm not a reporter, I'm a hacker.

BB: Really?  Well, you had me fooled!

M: Look--

BB: Ah, ah, ah!  I've got the conch shell yet, Messenger.  I'm calling to let you know that...well, I'd like to meet you soon.  Talk to you face-to-face.  Would you prefer that?

M: Yes, I think I would prefer that.

BB: All right, then.  I'll get back to you once I've made time in my busy schedule.

And here he hung up.

So.  Looks like I'm finally going to be meeting Big Brother at some point in the future.  Wish me luck.

-Don't Shoot The Messenger-