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24946
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 15, 2008, 02:52:15 pm »
CHAPTER 5: Delays.

Editor's Note: The Author is currently being put to work on an extremely boring and tedious bit of litigation. The reason this affects you, dear reader, is that he will be temporarily be unable to continue the Exciting Icelandic Saga-- um, that is, the Gripping Detective Novel that is "LMNO-PI". We apologize for the delay, and assure you, dear reader, that this story is in no way over. Why, we haven't gotten to the Caffeinatrixx, or the Triple Doom Oracles, or the Haiku battels, or the Scrabbleists! Not to mention the exciting conclusion... Actually, we're just hoping it's exciting, since we have no idea how this is going to turn out....

24947
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 15, 2008, 02:51:42 pm »
CHAPTER 4: The Open Bar; Showdown.

As she stepped out of the car, Erin said, “You’ve got to be kidding me.” 

We were standing in front of a narrow door, attached to a cramped, squat, suspiciously non-Euclidian building sandwiched between two hulking behemoth towers that loomed overhead, windows shattered like broken teeth, or spare eye sockets gouged out of the walls.

“I know, I know.  They like a certain sense of mystery abut it.  Makes ‘em feel dangerous.”  I took her hand (the sensation of my fingers entwining with her made me think of copulating Seraphim, of snakes in the spring), and led her to the door.  “Hey, OB!” I shouted at the door.

“Who are ‘They’?” Erin whispered.  I didn’t have a chance to answer, as the surface of the door swelled, and suddenly had the appearance of a round, friendly face, about three times the size of a normal head.

“L, how are you?  I—“The huge eyes rolled towards Erin, and scowled.  Erin let out a muffled shriek and flinched back, as the door looked her up and down.  “What do you think you’re doing, L?”

“She’s a client, OB.  Play nice.  We were just assaulted by a cell phone.”

“You sure?  She looks too good to be one of yours…”

“Hey, thanks a lot, OB!  Now, are you going to let us in, or am I gonna have to do this the hard way?”

The door grinned, “Oh, I was just kidding.  We know your credit is good here.  C’mon in.”  The face disappeared, and the door was a door again.

Erin looked at me quizzically.  “What’s the hard way?”

I chuckled.  “Darling, there is no hard way.  The Open Bar likes to play that it’s just a little kid, having awoken only a few months ago.  But really, it basically could control everything that happens in itself.  This includes entering.  It’s a good thing we raised the energy through sex and not violence.  I wouldn’t want that much negative energy in one consciousness.  I prefer his silly goof at immaturity.’

OB’s face popped out of the door again.  “I heard that.”

“You were supposed to.”  The face disappeared again, and I grabbed the doorknob.  Turning to Erin, I said, “you ready for this?” as I swung the door open.

“I guess so… Holy shit!”  On the other side of the door was an enormous room, wood-paneled, with large wooden columns supporting a stories-high vaulted roof.  There were tables scattered about, an enormous mahogany bar with brass railings, a stage off to one side, and what looked to be private rooms in back.  Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ cover of “All Tomorrow’s Parties” emanated from nowhere in particular.  The place was about three-quarters full, and filled with all sorts of odd types: Scrabblists, Emo kids, Metalheads, Drunken Buddhists, Renegade Kareokists, and the Ubiquitous Barflys.  I led Erin over to the bar, where a man with an enormous polystyrene nose was wiping a glass down with his shirttail.

“Hey, Mangrove, two martinis.”

He looked up.  “LMNO, haven’t seen you here in a while.  Who’s the lovely lady?”

“Ah, yes.  Erin, this is Mangrove.  Mangrove, Erin.”

“A pleasure,” Mangrove said, as two martini glasses filled with expensive gin and a lemon rind delicately twisted along the rims materialized in front of us.  Erin looked at them dubiously.

“It’s ok,” I said.  “Look up.”

The ceiling was barely visible, as there were oddly shimmering darts of light folding in upon themselves, in a perpetual mobius strip of color and illumination.  “What is that?” asked Erin, enraptured.  I turned to her to answer, and was momentarily caught up in the sense of wonder she radiated, the raucous noise of the bar dimmed, the rest of the world faded away.

“Um.  The, ah…”  I followed her gaze up, and came back to myself.  “Those are the collapsing wave states.  They’re what made the Open Bar.  When you concentrate hard enough, one of the wave states will fold the universe into what you were thinking about.  That’s how we got this place to look the way it does.  Apparently, OB can fold space-time.  Mang here decided that a good bar should always be almost full, but never packed, because it adds to a atmosphere of solidarity and community.  Or Something.  Did I get that right?”

“Indubitably, L.  Now miss... Erin, was it?”

“Yes.”

“…Erin.  LMNO tends to get snobbish about his drinks, I was wondering if you would like anything other than the bitter taste of gin?”  Mangrove had a sly grin on his face as he asked.  I knew what he was up to.

Erin smiled back.  “A white wine, if you please.  Sauvignon Blanc, preferably.”

“Absolutely.”  A chilled glass of wine appeared in front of her.  I decided to step in before things got out of hand.

“Mang, we’re looking for Aini.”

“Why the fuck would you deliberately look for her?”

“Face-Raping Bat…  It’s a long story.  I’ll tell you later.  Anyway, is she around?”

“Back corner.  Just look for the large amount of people deliberately avoiding her.”

“Thanks.”  I grabbed my glass, and took a long pull.  This was gonna be tough.  “One more thing, Mang,” I said.

“What, pray tell?”

“Lemme get a cold wrought-iron crowbar.”

~~~

With the cold iron crowbar in hand, I inclined my head in Erin’s direction.  “Look, if you don’t want to deal with this, you can stay here with Mang.  Not only would he enjoy the experience, he’d also the closest to the Bar, so you’d be perfectly safe.  Not to mention, I think OB has a crush on you.”

“What do you mean?”

“Look to your left.”  A bouquet of flowers had appeared, hovering in the air, and lowered itself into a vase which rose from the bartop.  Then a box of chocolates appeared.  “See?  What a hopeless romantic.”

A voice emanating from nowhere in particular said, “I heard that.”

Erin patted the railing, smiled, and said, “Um… thanks, uh, ‘OB’, but I really have to take care of this.”  Straightening up, she looked at me with steely determination, and said, “Somebody, somewhere, is trying to scare me, and just recently tried to hurt me.  So I’m in for the long haul.  Let’s go do this.”

“Fair enough.”  I turned, and began searching out our Troll.

It wasn’t hard to find her:  There was only one place in the Bar that people were reluctant to go.  A moat of empty tables and chairs surrounded a hazy mass that only slightly resembled a young woman with wings on her back.  From a distance, it looked like an out-of-focus photograph, but it shimmered, like a heat mirage.  Then you could hear her:  From where we were, it was a low buzzing, like cicadas from a mile off, but as we drew closer, you could start making things out.

Meep3.14592A FAGGOT WHO LOVES TO MASTURBATE WHILE EDITING POSTS INTO PERVERTED MESSAGESoracles are dumb, and psychics are always wrongmeep65358979323846264I sprinkle you with fairy dust...

Erin stopped.  “What’s going on?  What is that?”

“That, is the Aini collective.  Millions of nano-bots, all loosely connected by a driving urge to annoy as many people as possible.  The thing is, each of the bots has a tiny spark of independent thought, which makes her a bit tough to talk to if you don’t get her attention first.”

meep3383279502884Stop changing what I say...”

“But why does… she... it…” Erin trailed off, dumbfounded.

“I know, she has that effect on people.  Let me handle it.”

“How?  How are you going to be able to deal with nano-bots?”

“The thing is, she thinks she’s a fairy.  She’s convinced herself so much so, that she actually plays by the ancient rules of fairly lore.”  I hefted the crowbar.  “Hence the cold wrought iron.  Oh, which reminds me—Turn your pockets inside out.”

“I don’t have pockets.”  She motioned downwards at herself, and I foolishly looked.  Her tight red dress clung to her hips like clingfilm, detailing the smooth curves of her body, a shallow dip where her thighs met, the gentle and slight protrusions of her hipbones.  It was the promise of heaven, the inevitability that all men succumb, the literal birthplace of desire.

THEY HAVE CARNAL RELATIONS WITH GOATS!!... Meep

Aini’s incessant ranting brought me around again.  We were now face to faces, the bots coalescing, trying to approximate a face and a body, but their independence made them unable to agree on an appearance.  The result was not unlike seeing the corpse of a young girl covered with insects.

“Aini, I want to talk with you.  This is Erin.”

This is Erin1971693993751058209749445923I want to talk with youmeepI ate yew.  Yum!  Squirrels are stupidfairy dust…”

“I’m serious.  Hey!  Are you listening?”

Are you listening?...I didn’t say that, why are you making me say that?... 06647093GOAT FUCKER!

“Enough of this shit,” I muttered as I drew back with the crowbar, and swung it as hard as I could at Aini’s head.  The front part of her face sheared off, as hundreds of bots died, falling to the floor, no more than silicon and nanowires. 

Aini shrieked, and quickly rose from the table, up, and up, her faux wings pretending to flap, as the nanobots quickly re-arranged themselves to form a bow in her hand.  “I shoot an arrow at your head! she cried, and let loose a stream of bots.  Erin screamed, and ducked under a table.

“Fuck you.”  I swung again, and the ‘arrow’ dissolved into angry dust.  Using the crook of the crowbar, I hooked Aini’s foot, shearing it off at the knee.  “OB!  Window!” I yelled.  A beautiful stained glass window appeared in the wall, just as I hurled Aini’s leg.  It shattered in a beautiful rainbow of glass, the shards of which disappeared before falling among the other patrons.  A few cheered and clapped in appreciation of the show.  I owe Agent Compassion for that move, I thought.  Damn, I owe her a dollar.

“Aini! Listen up,” I yelled.  “I need your hyper math!”

Oh.  She fluttered down.  What’s up?

I sighed.  Why is it always this hard?  I handed her the slip of paper I got from the face-raping bat.  “This looks like machine code.  I need to know what it says.”

Did you know I can find out anyone’s IP address and then change it at will?  It’s easy!... Meep…”

I swung the crowbar again, this time catching her in the side with a satisfying crunch.  I could hear the thousands of tiny robots pulverized.  Damn, it felt good.  “PAY ATTENTION!”

Ow!  Dammit!  Ok, ok… It’s mixed format… it’s repeating “XVI” and “16” a few times…  Oh look, the inevitable “23”…  It’s throwing a lot of purposeful gibberish between “7”s and “8”s… ok, a few words here... “Neztach”… “Hod”… Stupid psychics…  Ok, skipping a bit…  Ah.

“What?”

Hope you like the bohemian scene.”

“Aini…”

Whatever this is, and wherever you got it, Aini said with what approximated a knowing grin, it came from the shop at 42nd and 13th.  Don’t forget your beret... meep…”

I knew when not to push it any further.  I abruptly turned around, grabbed Erin by the elbow, and quickly walked away.  “Don’t look back,” I muttered.  The crowd parted for us as we made our way back to the front of the bar.

GOAT FUCKER!!... I didn’t say that, you made me do it64709384460955058223yer not kewl, and yew know it[/size]meepmeep…”[/size]

“Just ignore her,” I said.  “It will soon seem like a dream.”

“It already seems like a dream.”

“Mang!  More drinks!  Make ‘em doubles!” 

Mangrove’s nose awaited us, with the rest of him behind it.  “Hell, after that performance, why don’t you just take the bottle?”

“Fine by me.  Make it scotch.”

Mang rolled his eyes.  “But of course.  Erin?”

Demurely, she said, “Better make it scotch for me, as well.”  She turned to me, and said, “so, did you understand anything she was babbling about?”

“Yeah, one or two things.  I have to work out some of the details, but I know where we have to go next.”

“…And that would be…”

“What do you know about poetry?”

“It’s usually bad, and it takes place in coffee shops?”

“Right both times.  But don’t worry.  The coffee there is excellent.”

24948
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 15, 2008, 02:45:24 pm »
CHAPTER 3: Who’s Up For Some Exposition?
 
I grabbed my shabby leather trench coat as we left the office, making our way down the dimly-lit, musty corridor to the street.  The wiring here was as bad as the office, and the flickering bulbs did nothing to calm Erin’s nerves.  Against my better judgment, I offered her my arm.  With a wan smile, she placed her palm in the crook of my elbow, and drew close.

The scent coming off her, like the fields of Amsterdam, like the first rain of summer, mounted a frontal attack on my brain, as the pressure from her fingertips made me think of what those hands could do, in another time, another place.  Dammit!  Get a hold on yourself, L!  And yes, I know that was another pun.  Shut it!  Don’t think that she’s gonna get over the Face-Raping Bat anytime soon!

Turning towards me, Erin said, “I still don’t see why we’re going to a Bar.”

“Not just any bar, honey.  This one is… Special.”

“Special like ‘mine is the power and the glory’ special, or special like ‘I need help wiping my own ass’ special?”

I chuckled.  “Neither, doll face.  There are some pretty weird characters who hang out there who might help us with this.”  I pulled the scrap of binary code from my pocket, & she flinched, but kept her cool.

“Your friends, I bet.”

“Well, some of them.  Others… let’s just say we have an uneasy truce.”

“Hmph.  Sounds like any other joint in the City.”

“Ah.  But can you say that any other bar will talk back to you?”  Leaving that last comment hanging, I opened the front doors onto the street. 

The City loomed through the threshold, the grim oppressiveness pushing down on your shoulders almost immediately.  It wasn’t supposed to be like this, originally.  There was something about the way the City was built.  “Psychotecture” they called it.  The theory was that the brain interpreted angles in the same way it interpreted feelings and emotions.  Make the angle big enough, prominent enough, and it will affect your mood.  Of course, the possibilities were huge, and Government, inc. ate that shit up like pancakes.  The designers got to work, like Frank Lloyd Wright on steroids, plotting out the buildings, the streets, even the lampposts.  Great idea, right?  Make the City what you want it to be:  The financial center attentive, focused, and precise, the Restaurant district warm, inviting, etc.

When it was finished, the designers submitted the City to Government, inc. who then did what they always did:  Auction off to the lowest bidder.  Who, of course, will cut corners.  Literally.  The precise distances and angles the designers calculated were eyeballed, estimated, and (occasionally) eliminated.  When it was all done, the City was a mockery of itself, a concrete and steel grotesque, oppressive and forbidding, even on the brightest Spring day.  Needless to say, the suicide rate in the City shot up 1723% in the first year after completion.  No wonder no one left their windowshade up for long. 

Pulling up my collar, we hunched against the psychic assault of the City in all its vast malevolence, and made our way to the car.  A silver, beat-to-shit late model beast, it contrasted sharply against the sleek and sinister beauty of the latest models parked nervously alongside.

“Holy shit,” Erin said, bemused.  “Does that thing run on gas, still?”

“Never got around to installing the hydro cell converter.”

“Where do you find the cash to refill the damn thing?”

“I try not to use it that often, but today, we’re in a hurry, and since there’s no one on the road yet, I figure we can get away with it.”

“Damn, I think I will need a drink after riding in that piece of junk.”

“Just get in.  We’ve got to get to the Open Bar before the Troll gets too drunk.”

“We’re actually looking for a Troll?”

“A collective, actually,” I said, hitting the started, & gunning the car to life.  The engine fought me for a second, as if it knew it wasn’t long for this world, and just wanted to fade away into rust, but then it remembered why it was made, and let out an angry roar as it cleared its pipes of any carbon that might be in its steel throat.

“We’ve got to find Aini.”

~~~

We drove in silence for a few minutes.  Well, relative silence, anyway, as the car grumbled, coughed, & roared its way through the mostly empty streets of the City.  I glanced over at Erin.  She had a look on her face like a John Singer-Sargent painting, deep but not revealing any secrets.

“Ok.  Fine.  You’re saying the only way to figure out whatever that—that—“

“Face-Raping Bat.”

“Yeah, Face-Raping Bat—was doing is to find a Troll collective.  Fine.  But what do you mean about the Bar talking back to you?”

I sighed.  “Listen.  This is a delicate subject, because I’m not sure if Government, Inc. knows about it.  You remember when they came up with Quantum Storage, so they could collect almost infinite data on everyone in the country?”

“Yeah.  There was a big protest about it.”

“…Until most of the protesters were killed in the ‘Accident’.  Anyway, a few who got away went underground, where they were able to hack their way into Government Inc.’s system & see what was really going on.  What they found was, like I said earlier, a system of storage, but no way of processing the information fast enough.  The Quantum Processor simply couldn’t survive the massive amount of energy required to make it run.”

“But what does that have to do with a Bar?”

“I’m getting there.  These underground hackers decided that they were going to try & beat Government, Inc to the punch and develop their own Quantum Processor, so they could stay a step ahead of the Christ Squads and to keep tabs on the Claw Shrimp.  Their breakthrough came when they realized the only solution was to bring the Quantum process to the Macro world.  That way, the larger bodies could handle the energy needed without breaking down.

“Their next problem was to somehow manifest tangible Quantum symptoms in a visible form.  Luckily, these weren’t your usual Hackers.  They decided to throw everything they had at the problem, so they tried combining their technical and mathematical skills with some... unorthodox methods.”

“‘Unorthodox’.”

Yeah.  They hooked up with a Kabbalist (a real Kabbalist), a couple of Ceremonial Magicians, a Tarot card reader, and combined that with their resident Tantrist--”

“Sex Magic?  Are you serious?”

“Serious as the Pope’s feeding tube.  She was able to raise enough kundalini to manifest a fairly good representation of the Tree of Life as pure energy, but it wouldn’t stay still.  It was too unpredictable.  It kept changing, & breaking down.  After taking a break, they had some tequila, and realized that it they had to embrace the unpredictability, not control it.  Perhaps it was because they were all pretty drunk, but they decided that since perception helped shape quantum actions, then they should make the laboratory into a bar, which is perhaps the most unpredictable place a person can go.”

“Now you’re putting me on.”  Erin began to pout, and I almost drove the car into a streetlamp before I pulled myself together enough.

“You’d think I was, but get this:  By adding the element of chaos to the probability equations of Quantum mechanics, the Orgone energy from sexual charge, and the altered consciousness of Magic and Tarot, something happened: Tangible, macro, collapsing wave states.  In that environment, in that place, you could, just by thinking about it, create whatever you wanted.  Granted, it wasn’t quite the Quantum Processor they were looking for, but damn, it was fun.  They decided to not only keep it a secret, but keep the bar part up and running, with entrance available to only those who know.”

“…”

“I know, it sounds like bullshit.  It gets worse.  A few months ago, the bar somehow gained sentience.”

“That’s it.  Let me out of the car.”

“Wait.  Think about it.  Whet is the human mind but information being strung together in random ways?  What is consciousness but an enormous probability?  The Macro wave states had existed for so long, they started self-regulating.  You’ll see.  We’re almost there.”

Softly, subtly, we had slid into a darker part of the city.  We had left the relative eeriness of the City’s residential district, and had entered the pseudo-psychotic Warehouse District.  Graffiti dedicated to Hastur and Nyarlotep fought with each other, and you could see the glint of wide eyes and sharp knives in every dark angle large enough to hide a body (or two).  The occasional working streetlight did nothing but push the surrounding darkness to a more sinister, inky mess.

“I gotta warn you, dollface, the Open Bar is a little different than most of the places you’ve probably been to.”

“Oh, really?”  She finally smiled again, briefly, like she had more secrets than she knew what to do with.  “And how do you know where I’ve been?”

“I’m just saying, even with the self-regulating Quantum consciousness, the wave states are unstable, and need constant maintenance and upkeep.”

“Meaning what, exactly?”

“Well, why fix what isn’t broke?  The same processes that brought it into being are used to keep it going.”

“…You mean, tantric sex, excessive drinking, and strange pagan rituals…”

“Exactly.  And Math, of course.”

“Of course.”

I stopped the car.  “We’re here.”

24949
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 15, 2008, 02:43:22 pm »
CHAPTER 2:  Face-Raping Bats!

“Well, Erin, let me see this cell phone of yours,” I said.  She reached into her purse (purse?  Did she have a purse when she walked in?  How could she have kept that hidden?) and pulled out your typical-style phone.  High-end, no doubt, but just the same as any other:  Black, smaller than a deck of cards, and vaguely sinister-looking.  She laid it on the desk, and glanced up at me.

“I know it sounds stupid, but I’m almost afraid to touch it.”  Looking quickly at the phone, not wanting to get lost in her eyes a second time, I noticed it had a few deep scratches in the back, where the battery gets recharged.

“What’s this?”

“Well, after about a week of these strange calls, I lost my nerve, and sort of… snapped.  I threw the phone at the wall.  It didn’t stop the calls, though.”

I picked up the phone, opened it, & began dialing a string of digits.  “Well, let’s see if we can figure out where these calls are coming from.”

“I tried ‘Star 69’, but it didn’t seem to work.”

Letting another innuendo slip by, I said, “Well, that’s because you use the Government, Inc.’s services.  You know as well as I do that ever since the National This-Is-For-Your-Own-Good-Just-Trust-Us Act of 2006 passed, no information request will ever provide accurate information, just add your name to the ever-growing list of people who want to Know Too Much.”

Looking around nervously, she said, “I had to take a chance.”

“Don’t worry about it.  These days, the list includes about 98% of the population.  Government, Inc. uses Quantum Information Storage, but they haven’t gotten around to figuring out how to make a Quantum Processor yet.  So it’s like finding a speck of dust in the middle of the galaxy.”

A small smile flickered at the corner of her mouth.  I noticed that her lips, full and red like the promise of a pomegranate just before the bitterness sets in, had a small, almost miniscule scar running from the top edge of the left cupids bow diagonally to the bottom lip, like she was delicately brutalized at some great distance in her past, or had fallen out of a willow tree as a child.  It was the smallest and most perfect of flaws on a flawless face, the unnatural error of symmetry calling attention to her impeccable beauty.  “So how is it, Mr. LMNO, that you plan to get around Government Inc.’s little plan?”

“Ah, it all depends on your connections, dollface.  I know a couple of Scrids down at MegaTeleComTech, and they owe me a favor.”

“They use Scrids?”  Her forehead folded upon itself slightly, and I realized that was the look of someone who’s not used to being puzzled, when the muscles have all but forgotten the feeling of a frown.

“Well, with the millions of signals coming down the wires & flying through the air every second, who else but genetically-modified, hyper-intelligent Giant Land Squids are they going to use?”  The phone on the other end of the line was ringing, so I held up one finger, not wanting to be any ruder than I had to be to Erin.  After all, if she was going to be paying me, she was my employer.  The line picked up.

“Hey, Randy? ...Yeah, it’s LMNO… I know, I know, not since September… Mmm Hmmm… How’ the brood?  …Great, great…  Look, Randy, I have to call in that favor…  No, that didn’t count, because I wasn’t the one who got the wires crossed…  Yeah, well, tell it to the wall…  Ok, fine.  25%, and a sack of mollusks.  Listen, Randy, what I need from you is to keep a tracer on this phone, number 333-2342, and to track all incoming calls….  Yeah? Great.  If you can do this for me, we’re even…. Right…  Ok.  I’ll call you again when I need the number.”

I hung up, and looked at Erin, still struggling with the glass of scotch.  Pouring another for myself, I said, “Well, that’s that.  All we have to do now is wait for another call.”

Suddenly the phone rang.  I snatched it up, and a sickly whine burst from the receiver.

“KkkkkkkkkssssssssBellandBookandFlamesssssssskkkkkkkFeartheComingOfAeaiiiinSooooffffhhh
UsurperoftheClowntroddenggggggggggggggggggg…”  The line went dead.

“That was pretty freaky,” I said.  I turned to look at Erin.  She had contracted somehow, drawing herself into herself, her eyes wide with fear.  She grabbed my glass, and drained it, her face never changing expression.

“It’s ok.  I’m calling Randy now.”  I dialed up the Scrid, and waited as the connection was made.  “Randy?  Yeah, it’s me again.  I need to know—WHAT?  How is that possible?  …No, I don’t think you’re lying, that’s genetically impossible, that’s why it’s so much fun playing poker with you… Could you triple-check that?  …I see.” I hung up.

“What?  What?”  Erin was literally on the edge of her seat, chest heaving with anticipation, temporarily driving all other thoughts out of my head.  Coming back to myself, I put the phone carefully on my desk.

“He said the call was coming from inside the phone itself,” I said, as I drew my gun. 

I don’t like guns.  I mean, when I have to use them.  Sure, target practice is fine, and it gives you a certain “manliness” quotient, holding the powerful and explosive Doom Cock like some hero from TV, but when it really comes down to needing to use a gun, everything becomes uncomfortable.

Case in point: Right now, the nine millimeter in my hand felt all too heavy, and the smell of cordite and oil filled my nostrils.  I held Death in my hand, I wielded Violence.  And right now, it was pointed at a small piece of plastic on my desk.

Erin started, “Wait.  How can the call have originated inside the phone—“ when the phone rang again.  But it didn’t so much ring, as shriek.  Digital feedback, mixed with good old fashioned Screaming of the Damned, from what I could tell, filled the office.  The scratches down the back of the cell phone widened and split, following some sort of pre-described demarcations, splitting the top half down the middle, and spreading out either side, while what looked like legs began sprouting from the lower half.

“sssskkkkskkskkkkkkYourASoulWillSufferAgonyssskkkksttttshshshhhhhTearYourSkinUntilPainBecomesYourOnlyFriend... akehhekkksskkkkskkkkksssYouWillKnowNoFriendButThe PainOfYouSoulandTheEmptinessOfYouLifeskjjehhddded …”

“Oh, My God,” Erin cried.  “It’s EMO!”

Wings burst through the back of the phones, and buzzed furiously.  Launching itself


The editors of “LMNO-PI” would like to interrupt at this point and note that the “face-raping bat” scene has been deleted, seeing as how the Author of this petty drama is currently both sleep-deprived and hungover, and wrote, what we here all agree, was a pretty bad and tasteless scene.  Needless to say, this chapter is filled with weak adjectives, and horrible similes, such as “plummeted through the air like a Pearl Harbor bomber”, and the like.  The Editors would like to apologize to the readers, and to assure you that this passage should contain Horrific and Wildly Exciting descriptions of LMNO’s ferocious and chaotic gunfight with the Strangely Demonic Face-Raping Bat Cell Phone.  We apologize for the interruption.

…The last bullet hit home, and hit true.  The phone exploded into shards of plastic and bits of newly-formed flesh, and what seemed to be fluttering bits of paper.  The newly found silence was almost stifling compared to the screams and gunshots.  I slid the gun back into its holster, and grabbed one of the slips of paper out of the air.  It was completely covered with Ones and Zeroes.

“Damn.  I’m not enough of a geek to read machine code raw.”

“What. The fuck.  Was that!?”

“I’ll explain it to you in the car.  Right now, we have to get out of here.”

“I put that up to my EAR!

“I know.  It likes that sort of thing.  But we have to go.  I need this translated.”

“Where are we going?”

“I need this read, fast.  So we’re going to a bar.”

WHAT?  Are you serious?  We just got attacked by that… that… thing—“

“Face-Raping bat.”

“—Whatever, and you’re thinking about getting drunk?  Not to mention, where are you going to find a place open right now?”

“Easy.  It’s the only bar open at this hour of the morning.  The Open Bar.”

24950
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 15, 2008, 02:42:26 pm »
LMNO-PI

CHAPTER 1: In the Office.  Morning.

The City.  Cold, grey, full of angles jutting at odd, predictable angles.  A place where anarchy lays just a gunshot away from the uneasy order that has slowly taken over.  Gee, I miss the suburbs.

It was a grey morning, as I groggily lifted my head from my desk.  I vaguely wondered who had cracked open my brain pan & replaced it with charcoal in mid-burn, when I noticed the bottle next to me, a half-inch of amber liquid left.  Right.  Another night of self-pity, in the City that doesn’t care.  Coming fully into painful consciousness, I grabbed the bottle & poured the rest of the cheap scotch into last night’s glass, fighting the nausea of a new day.

I leaned back in my chair, and looked out the window, at the concrete prison of Ideas that is the City.  There was little traffic this morning, as most people only come to the City when they have to.  Government, Inc. had proclaimed today to be a holiday for tax purposes, so the worker bees stayed in their hives, fearing to tread in the unpredictable streets.

Hearing the outer door open, I ran my fingers through my hair.  Graying already, my temples turning the color of the pavement.  The knock came as I straightened my tie, trying to make it look like I didn’t spend the night passed out in an alcoholic haze.

When She walked in, it was like a Krakatoa sunrise.  Short red hair trained to hold the curves of her skull like it was the president of the Clara Bow fan club, and a dress to match.  Legs that went for miles, all standing unsteadily on a pair of heels that could be used as weapons.  What the fuck was she doing here, in this room, in this building, in this City?  She was the kind of woman who threw the unfeeling vastness of the City into pure focus, just by standing there, radiating life.

“Are you LMNO?”

“Some call me that, yeah.”

“I hear you’re a dick.  I need someone to be a dick for me.”

“Did I mention I’m a fan of double entendres, as well?”  She smiled, a quick, no-teeth smile of condescension, but I could tell from her eyes she was holding something back. It took a lot to stand the City.  We all have our armor; some of us just hide it better.  “What can I do for you,” I asked.

“It’s this,” she said, tossing a playing card on my desk.  I picked it up, and noticed it wasn’t a playing card, but a Tarot card.  The Tower, to be exact.

“Ouch.”

She looked worried, and in that moment, it seemed like the entire Universe wanted to protect her, reassure her. “What is it?” she asked.

“Are you trying to tell me something?  Dames like you don’t just walk in here and throw Tarot at me.  I usually leave that to the Gypsies.”

“Someone slipped this into my box last night.”

“What did I tell you about entendres?”

“Look, LMNO—What kind of name is that, anyway?”

“My parents were librarians.  They liked keeping everything lined up.”

“I… See.” She gave me a look like she wasn’t sure whether to believe me.  “Well, I’ve been getting mysterious phone calls over the past few weeks, and now this.  I’m frightened.”

“What kind of phone calls?”

“It’s embarrassing.  I won’t tell you, unless you want to take the case.” 

I thought about next month’s rent, and the dwindling case of scotch in the closet.  What the hell, I thought, at least it’ll be interesting…  “Sure, dollface, I’ll work with you.  Now why don’t you tell me about it from the beginning…”

She sat down in an old, creaky wooden chair. She looked down at her hands, slender and tipped with nails like rubies.

“It all started 23 days ago,” she began.  “I started getting calls on my cell phone.  At first, there was this buzzing, squeaking noise, like a mouse trapped in a fax machine.  I thought it was just some sort of weird atmospheric thing, but after a few times of this, I started to hear… messages… Oh, I don’t know if I can go on.”

“Relax, have a seat.  Would you like some pie?”

”What?”

“Sorry.  Inside joke.  Drink?”  I grabbed a glass from a desk drawer, and wiped down the rim with my shirttail.  I stood up, feeling the joints in my knees pop, and the labor union that was my lower back decided to go on strike.   Wincing, I made my way gingerly to the closet, where the last lone bottle of scotch lived.  I cracked the seal, & poured her a finger or two.  “Now, what did these voices sound like?”

She sipped on the liquor, and made a face. “Do you have any ice?”

“What?  Do you prefer crack?”

“…I’m not sure I—“

“Ice?  In scotch?  You dames…”

Dagger-eyed, she choked down another sip.  “The voices,” she continued pointedly, “were more like muttering.  Whispers.  But gurgled, like they were getting over a head cold.  But also distorted, like a Big Black song.”

Wonders never cease, I thought.  Where did a classy broad like this find out about Big Black?  “So, what did these… eldritch… voices say?”

“I couldn’t figure it out, so I wrote it out phonetically.”  She reached her delicate hand up, and teased upon the neckline of her dress, slyly slipping her fingers between the fabric and her skin, allowing not so much as a square centimeter of flesh to show, but making anyone looking believe they had seen the hills of the Holy land itself.  This chick is a born tease.  Her hand withdrew from her cleavage, and between the index and middle fingers was a slip of paper.  She unfolded it, and the light scent of her flesh filled the narrow and dusty office.

At that moment, the weak light bulb, not the most friendly of appliances at the best of times, decided to revolt against its electrical masters.  With a flash and a pop, the office grew noticeably darker.  Even with the bright morning light, the grime and soot on the office windows was reluctant to improve the optics inside the room.  Startled, she took a step back, and raised her hand to her delicate ivory throat. 

“Fuck,” I muttered eloquently.  Reaching into my pockets, looking for a match, or a witticism, I finally produced a lighter, and used it to beat back some of the shadows encroaching on us.  “It’s ok,” I said.  “The wiring in this place sucks, but at least the rent doesn’t cost me a kidney.”

She smiled uneasily, then bent her head to peer at the paper in her hand.  “The voices said… ‘Aye, eeyo.  Kootooloo fagthan.  Better check on the baby.  Eevoh-hay, Pan-janitor.  And that’s how I saved Christmas.’  LMNO, what does this mean?”  She quickly lifted her head, and looked into my eyes.  I felt like time would stop as her green eyes locked into my blue, it felt like she was crawling up my optic nerves and into my brain, driving those perfect fingers into my cortex, twisting my brain stem around her little finger.

Grunting, I broke the eye contact, shaking my head like some beast with a nose full of porcupine quills.  How did she do that?  I took the slip of paper from her, desperately hoping our fingers didn’t touch.  “Let me look at that.  Oh, and if I’m going to take you case, I better know what to call you.”

“You can call me Erin.”

***      ***     ***     ***     ***

24951
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 15, 2008, 02:37:06 pm »
Question: Should I repost from the beginning?

24953
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 14, 2008, 05:52:27 pm »
I think you're in the next chapter, but you might not like it...

24954
Bring and Brag / Re: Double writing-poomp.
« on: April 14, 2008, 05:42:27 pm »
Too much use of the letter "B".

24955
Think for Yourself, Schmuck! / Re: Volunteer Thread
« on: April 14, 2008, 04:48:47 pm »
Awesome!

I don't really need them for anything, but I'm sure I can think up something...

24956
Or Kill Me / Re: Epistle to the Rabbi's
« on: April 14, 2008, 04:28:06 pm »
Because 4 people made fun of this kid or disagreed with him or something (I think, I'm not seeing where it happened), everyone on this site is elitist assholes that prove how enlightened he is and we make him laugh and something with hyena I think he want a Lion King RPG sub-forum because he has a right to his opinion and so do we but we're mean and shouldn't have mean opinions because that makes him laugh but I don't think he likes laughing because if we all make him laugh that should be a good thing but maybe his laughter is pain because clowns killed his mom in the ass which makes him lash out when he laughs at how stupid we all are for not liking his fun ideas and paradigms and stuff.

I think Hunter just summarized the history of the Internet.

24957
Or Kill Me / Re: The First Church of the Holy Lie
« on: April 14, 2008, 04:26:06 pm »
I think you might be confusing "telling the truth" with "saying all the negative shit you wouldn't normally say due to common courtesy."



24958
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 14, 2008, 04:06:55 pm »
Must be when we changed servers.

I might have a fresh copy around somewhere.

24959
Literate Chaotic / Re: LMNO-PI
« on: April 14, 2008, 03:56:13 pm »
I guess that means I should finish up this next installment, huh?

24960
I think you misunderstand the meaning of the BIP; it's not "what society wants you to do", it's what YOU THINK SOCIETY WANTS YOU TO DO, and what YOU THINK you should do, and what YOU THINK the world is.  You can define it however you wish, though.... it's your prison.

That's also fine with me. Goes the same way  -  actually because your perception of a condition creates what you also see as "what people" want. even if you are just maybe making it up or the group you are in/society you are living in has simmilar perceptions in their minds - you you would say prisons.

It's like being obsessed with what the neighbors would say - even though they might not even notice you are alive. Or they have the exact same film running for themselves in their noddyheady and that's where the party starts. Vicious circle thingy.



Ok, listen up:

1.  You cannot directly percieve everything in the universe simultaneously.
2.  You cannot interpret your perceptions seeing all ideological points of view simultaneously.
3.  No matter what filter or reality grid you use, you will always be editing out something.
4.  Even if you decide to shift grids/filters, you're still editing out something.

YOU CANNOT ESCAPE THE ABOVE CONDITIONS.

But what you can do is understand these facts, and act accordingly; understand that your view of reality is edited, and know that you can change the editing process, if you choose.

That, essentially, is BIP. 



LMNO
-sick of all this "oh, it's so depressing/I've already escaped from my BIP" shit.

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