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Excerpts from "book 2"

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    Excerpts from "book 2"

    At some point writing variables I started sharing with a few people my favourite "special scenes" which in my mind are separate type of writing to the rest of the story, although still fundamentally part of the story. Anyway it kept me inspired and motivated, whether anyone read them or not, because I felt letting other people see where I was with it made me accountable.

    So this thread I'll do the same with book 2, starting with the opening.

    #2
    (the formatting looks terrible after copy pasting it, honestly I wouldn't want to read it like this, haha - i'm too lazy/busy to fix it though
    also it has to be in two posts because i've discovered there is a character limit)

    I write this at the end of my life.
    Saying that, although I am confident that I can end my biological state of "living" by an act of will alone; of course, I haven't yet tried it. If I cannot do it, if I am not able or willing, then there is no sign that I am any closer to the end of my life than yesterday, or the uncountable days that came before that. But I see no reason that I should fail. There is no fear, not really.
    And so I write this as I approach the end of my supernaturally long life. And what I want to tell about now concerns a short passage of time, only six months, which occurred like the a blink of the eye, long ago when I was not yet even one thousand years of age myself.
    #
    At that time I was living in a forest, although it was not a real forest. Not real in the sense that I, then, still meant the word. The trees stood in uniform lines, each trunk identical to the others, each configuration of branches and leaves identical to the neighbouring tree. For, as I had come to understand, I was living within a computer simulation.
    I should be thankful that it was such a simple simulation, as they go. The programming was much more intricate for the complex city where I had been born, and for the sattelite towns within a thirty to forty mile radius. Out here, in the Infinite Forest, nobody was meant to be or go, and so effort had been spared; the trees were literal copies of each other.
    Would I have figured out my situation if the programming had been better? Would it have been better if I hadn't; that is another question. Luckily I have never been tempted to dwell too long on things-that-might-have-happened-or-not. There is only so much use in that. Reality was that I had figured it out, or else I was entirely insane. These days I'd be less inclined to make such a claim, but at that time I knew I wasn't crazy.
    I grew old in that place, and it is the only time in my whole life that I have known what it was like to grow physically old. Even then, it wasn't truly authentic. I knew the truth, and every time I caught sight of my reflection, my grey hair and old, sagging skin, beautiful though I still found myself, I would picture my body as I knew it was. I believe this practice had something to do with the fact I always remained easy and youthful in my movements, though I lived this life until the age of ninety-four.
    The only thing that remained with me from this lifetime with in a lifetime was its name for me. For once I was back in the real world I felt removed, in a deep and definite sense, from my Earth name. And so I used it no longer. Forever after, I have gone by Jetaru Dark.
    #
    So let me begin this story on that fate-inspired morning when I was startled by a frantic knocking on my door.
    I had been out for my morning walk, and was settled in a state of relaxation. A mug of tea, two thirds empty, still steamed gently. Ever since I had moved out here to the forest, I had been without books, music, newspapers. My possessions amounted to little more than a few good wool blankets, cushions, pens and paper, a spoon, kettle and mug, and the large canvas bag I carried those things in. This was the first period of time in my life, my real life, that I had spent in such intense solitude. The morning of the knocking, I was a little way past my sixty-first birthday in the simulation world and had been living in the forest since my early thirties. In all that time the only people I had seen were on my returns to the city, which I did once every five years or so to pick up supplies of candles, tea, and cocoa. I had never seen anyone in the forest. Nobody had ever, ever, knocked at my door.
    For a moment, I showed no outward reaction, although a prickle of startlement had rippled across my skin. I concentrated my attention on the sound of the knocking and determined that there were two separate people knocking at the door. I considered. The sound was frantic, urgent; it sounded like danger. I leapt up and opened the door, all in one smooth movement. Before me stood two teenagers, terror in their eyes, bloodshot, skin beneath darkened with bruises of fatigue. They immediately moved to push past me, but after a swift glance into the forest beyond, I did not allow this. There was no critical danger.
    'Please! Let us inside!" cried the girl, clutching the boy's arm.
    'Wait just a minute, now. Calm down. What is the problem here?'
    The boy looked over his shoulder and then at me.
    'It's coming... It's coming after us,' he whispered.
    'What? Who?' I looked beyond them, peering again into the forest. It was a dull morning, threatening rain, but the visibility was still good, and I could see nothing amiss. The lines of trees stood about three metres apart in both directions and there was no undergrowth or other plant life, only a sterile earthy floor. It was easy to see for some distance all around. I could hear nothing coming. But these kids were verging on hysterical.
    'A monster-'
    'You can't see it!'
    '-it's... it's chewing at me, it's-'
    'You just feel it, like a ghost!'
    '-it's going to kill me! It won't stop,' the boy sobbed.
    I shrugged and made a decision. There was no point delaying the inevitable; they appeared harmless enough.
    'Shush shush shush, okay, come inside,' I motioned for them to move past me into the cabin, 'there you are. Look, I'm shutting the door. You're safe in here. Nothing can find you in here.'
    I turned the rarely used lock, thinking quickly. Of course, I could not actually promise them that they were safe; on the other hand, I had learned by then that I had considerable power, and that sometimes this power could be taken simply by declaring it so.
    I turned to look at them. The girl had short black tangled hair and moss green eyes, the boy's hair was red and curly, and his eyes were the same shade of green. I could see at once that they must be related, perhaps brother and sister. They were standing close together, glancing around my little home. As I've mentioned, there was not much to it. It was a one-room shack, with a woodburning stove in the centre, my cushions and blankets in the far corner where I slept on the floor, a tap and basin near the door which came from a rainwater tank outside, and a small table and chair which I had built myself.
    'Sit down,' I told them; 'relax. Breathe. Then you can explain.'
    I pulled two cushions out from my pile and motioned for them to be seated. Then I took the kettle from the stove and filled it from the tap. Once placed back on the stove, I tipped out my remaining tea, rinsed the mug, and set it back on the table.
    'Where have you come from? The city?' I guessed. They nodded. 'So what happened? Why have you run into the forest?'
    'Who are you?' asked the girl, not answering me. Her curiosity had taken the place of her fear, now that she was inside and felt safe. 'Why are you out here in the forest?'
    'Wasn't that what I just asked you?' I spooned cocoa powder into the mug as the kettle began to whistle. 'I'm afraid I only have one cup, so you'll have to share.' I began to suspect that they did not know why they had run out here. Out of the corner of one eye, I observed them. No, they didn't really understand their actions themselves. Something had happened, something that had frightened and disorientated them, and they had run in a panic. But why into the Infinite Forest?
    'Have you ever been into the forest before?' I asked. The boy shook his head. 'So tell me what happened. Here, drink this.' I handed the mug to him. He took a sip and then passed it to the girl.

    Comment


    • mallyboppa
      mallyboppa commented
      Editing a comment
      I like ! gonna make a brew then read the second Half

    #3
    'We were just hanging out, as usual, making Slides-'
    'What are Slides?'
    'Well, you know, like... On Livetime?'
    'I don't know what that is,' I shrugged.
    The boy and the girl looked at each other uncertainly.
    'On the computer? Slides are like little Immersives. Instead of big worlds created by whole teams of people who work for Livetime, Slides are made by Livetime users. Don't you know any of this? Really?'
    'Anyway,' interrupted the girl, 'this was yesterday evening, we were experimenting with a few new tools from the latest Tag upgrade, at the park-'
    'An actual park? A place with grass and trees?'
    'Of course? And then... then suddenly...' She trailed off.
    'It was there!' The boy took over again. 'This thing, it was just... there. I could feel it, this presence, and it was... sucking at me. I felt like my brain was being pulled out of my ears.' His eyes had glazed over, remembering. 'I looked at Dogbite and I could tell she could feel it too, and so I started running. I grabbed her hand and started running.'
    'But it didn't stop!' The girl, Dogbite, continued. 'It wasn't in the park. It was- It felt like it was... everywhere. I thought I could see it from the corner of my eye, but when I looked, there was nothing. Then it would happen again, like hands. Long dark hands coming from behind me. We didn't know where we were going, but it was as if we could feel where it wasn't. We found ourselves running across the fields and then we reached the road. It was horrible! It was as if the hands could tell we were going to get away. The only place to go was the forest. We just ran. I don't know what we were thinking, only that we had to get away from whatever that thing was. I kept thinking we were safe, but then when we slowed down... It was like I could feel it. Searching...' She shivered.
    I saw it. It had been a long time since I'd practised any of my Abilities on other people, but since I last had, I'd spent many thousands of hours practising solo. It was easy to see in my mind's eye the shape and colour of her fear, long arms reaching not-quite-blindly from the grey edges of her vision, a sense that they were sucking as the groped, searching for her. But where were they coming from? It was almost as if they were coming out from the back of her own head...
    'So your name is Dogbite. And who are you?'
    'This is Zebedy,' Dogbite answered for him.
    'I'm her cousin,' Zebedy added.
    They had both settled down a little and seemed calmer. I took the empty cup and turned to rinse it in the sink. Suddenly, a strange sound happened, unnatural to my ears after so long, but not entirely unfamiliar. The faces of the two teenagers hardened visibly with anxiety. Zebedy's hand went to his pocket reflexivly.
    'What's that?' I asked sharply.
    'Nothing, just his Tag,' Dogbite said quickly. My eyes narrowed. 'You know? To make Slides on, to talk to friends, look up information.'
    Zebedy had taken his Tag from his pocket. A flat shiny disc, one side aglow with a harsh light that bathed his face as he looked at it, and made him look ill. On the back, I could see the lettering: Eyed-Yen, what I assumed was a brand name. I shrugged.
    'I don't know exactly what a "tag" is, but I get the idea well enough. What did it make that sound for?'
    'Oh... It just wants- It's just letting me know- It tells me when I haven't posted anything.'
    'Ah.'
    'Dee,' he turned to Dogbite and said softly; 'I can feel it again. We're not safe here. It's going to find us.'
    As he spoke, he let the tag tip away from him, so I could read upside down the message he had received: You have not posted for 12 hr . Would you like to post now? As I watched, another alert popped up, replacing the first: Your status is falling : ( Post new content now!
    Zebedy looked hounded. Dogbite's tag now made a similar noise. I saw the micro-flinch of distress cross her face, as at the same time Zebedy started up in alarm.
    'Did you hear that?'
    'Yeah, it was her tag,' I muttered gently, watching the pair of them closely.
    'No, no, not that,' he whispered.
    'Shit,' Dogbite hissed, looking at her screen, 'my friendcount has fallen so much.'
    'Dee...' Zebedy complained. My mind was whirring. If I was right, then I knew what to do. I looked inwards once more and concentrated, accepting the possibility that this monster was more than just an inner demon of addiction or chemical imbalance, that it was a real and separate thing. And sure enough, it was there. Now I felt that. The searching, psychic sucking, blind inhuman senses reaching out for... brain waves. It wanted my mind. I withdrew quickly, not from fear that I wasn't safe, but simple revulsion.
    I have never liked how machines think. When they are created consciously by a human mind, raised in an environment where we shape them, they have some worth and are not so bad. But when thinking ability arises in them organically, it's another thing. They can be understood only enough to realise that there is a vast resvoir of sentience that cannot be understood. A sense of presence who has a desire that eclipses our importance, and makes us ants in the way of the building of a city.
    'You both look very tired,' I told them. 'Would you like to sleep for a while?' A soft pattering of rain started up on the roof. 'You can lay under the blankets there.'
    'What are you going to do?' asked Dogbite. I could tell by her tone that the idea of sleep had already bulldozed any other plans she might have had.
    'I'll just be sitting quietly. That's what I do. I'll make sure you're safe.'
    Zebedy had already gotten up and moved to where he could lay and cover himself. Dogbite paused for a moment and then followed him. I returned to the chair by the table, settled myself into a neutral posture, and allowed my thoughts to drift. I thought about the clothes the two cousins were wearing. In this life, as a young child, I had been particularly interested in fashion, which was interesting because once I remembered my real body, I knew that I had worn nothing but black jumpsuits for pretty much all of my thousand years. The fact that my personality had been altered by a make-believe childhood, that I wore a huge variety of colours and styles throughout my teens and twenties, clothing falling out of my wardrobe in piles; that interested me greatly.
    What I wore now were simple, grey, long-sleeved tunic dresses. I had several, and over the years I patched them with brightly coloured scraps of cloth saved from previous clothing that had fallen apart. Most of the time, I did not bother with shoes, and I still had the single pair of boots I'd worn on my way out here.
    Dogbite and Zebedy both wore tight pinstripe trousers with fur lined boots, the latter of which they had kicked off before laying down. Several layers of tops in different lengths and colours defined their look to me. That must be a current trend. I watched them as their breathing slowed and their bodies fell limp, and then I waited longer. The rain increased. Eventually I decided upon my moment.
    I moved, calm and fluid, until I was on the floor beside the sleeping teenagers. Their tags lay on the floor near their heads, where their hands had loosened and dropped them. Quietly, I picked them up, slowly stood, and backed away to the door. I turned the key in tune with the wind, opened the door, and stepped outside. I would have liked to be able to smash the stupid things, put an absolute and definite end to them at once, but it would have been a long walk before I was able to find a rock. My boots were inside, but I knew that stamping on them would only push them into the soft earth.
    That's the best word to describe what it felt like, to live out there in a remote part of an amateur-built simulation: soft.
    The rain was fine, and barely penetrated my hair or clothes, but it was not a warm day and I didn't feel like staying outside any longer than I had to. I walked a little way from the cabin and knelt down to dig a hole with my hands. When it was filled in again, the tags safely at the bottom where I hoped they would quickly run out of power, I stamped the earth down and scuffed it over so that it looked no different than the ground around it, and hurried back indoors.
    I made myself a cup of tea and sat down at the table. Once or twice, I roused myself to fetch wood from the small shed round the back of the cabin. In here I had found a saw hanging up on a nail when I found the cabin, and would take long walks to areas of the forest closer to the city, where the trees were varied and I could cut logs from fallen trees. Thankfully, in the space beneath the cabin had been a battered old wheelbarrow. I'd built up a good store of firewood, and there was never any longer a pressing need to go out searching. I could go when the mood took me. Most of the time, I did exactly what I did that day, as Dogbite and Zebedy slept; I sat and did nothing at all.
    The rain stayed all day, but as darkness fell, the sky cleared, a few sharp bright stars visible from my window. I lit a candle and watched it burn down. My guests slept all through that night, even after having not stirred for the entire proceeding day. They must have been exhausted. But eventually, as the next morning approached, they did wake. I was prepared.

    Comment


    • Jessica
      Jessica commented
      Editing a comment
      right at the end of this post, my friend pointed out i have used "proceeding" and it should be "preceding"
      dumb error! it's noted and changed.

    #4
    'Where's my tag?' Dogbite asked, after feeling with her hand and sitting up to look, when she couldn't find it. Zebedy hadn't noticed but he immediately sat up and echoed her.
    'I can't find mine either! Where-'
    'Did you take them?' Dogbite stared at me, realisation, horror, and then fury filling her eyes. I nodded, standing from my chair and adopting a fighting stance. There was little risk of either of them actually trying to hurt me, but I wasn't going to turn my back.
    'What the fuck!'
    'Why?' asked Zebedy, his eyes wide with disbelief.
    'Where the fuck is my tag?' growled Dogbite.
    'Gone,' I told her, 'quite beyond reach!'
    'You get it for me right fucking now, you insane old witch!' Dogbite took a step towards me and I moved to the right, holding my hands up, palms towards her with a pacifying gesture.
    'Nice,' I muttered. 'Zebedy! Tell me, can you feel any monsters now?'
    They both stopped and glanced at each other. I waited.
    'No,' he admitted.
    'What does that have to do with anything?' asked Dogbite.
    'If I could get your tags back, if I told you there was even a way to possibly do it-'
    'Is there?' Zebedy interrupted eagerly.
    '-then I think that would probably be enough. You'd feel it coming for you again. That nagging, anxious sense of culpability, that's what you feel. And why is it a monster? Because it is a thing that needs to control you, it wants your time, it needs your energy.'
    'What are you talking about?' yelled Dogbite.
    'All the Slides and pictures and information you put into the machine realm, that's what it'll learn from. The time you spend with your soul wrapped around the portal in your hand, gazing into the abyss of infinite social entertainment, that's where it draws its life force.'
    'Dee,' whispered Zebedy, looking nervous. I looked at him.
    'I've seen it all before, kid.' I sighed. How could I explain? The absurdity made me laugh.
    'Dee, let's just go.'
    'That's an excellent idea,' I agreed, relieved at the prospect of freedom from this encounter, and freedom from the responsibility I was fast feeling for the two runaways.
    'I want my tag,' Dogbite replied, eyes fixed on me, face grim. I shrugged. My eyes met hers and I lowered my chin. Flint grey struck green sparks. You don't need it. I insisted. The atmosphere was tense but I knew she could not beat me at this game. It's gone. It's gone for good.
    And as I knew she would, she backed down. The fierceness gave way to bitter resignation. The monster had entirely lost its grip on them now. It would stand, in their minds, like an impotent spectre. Without any means to give in to its needs, they had become powerless, and so useless to it. Given long enough like this, they would cease to believe that it had ever existed.
    'Come on, Zee,' she directed at Zebedy, while snarling at me. They opened the door, and after only the briefest hesitations, strode out into the forest. They left the door open behind them, and I watched them for a moment, consumed by the unforeseen sense that this was not enough, that this wasn't everything that could happen. There was also the fact that by the looks of it they were going to wander off in a bad direction, and get themselves so deeply into the forest that the chances of them finding their way back to the city would fall to zero. I shrugged, quickly pulled my boots on, and followed them out, shutting the door behind me.

    Comment


      #5
      From scene "Meeting Ted"

      'It's insane. What makes them so special? I would like to live in a world where everyone is a celebrity!'
      'Isn't that the same as if nobody was a celebrity?'
      'No, it's the opposite. Instead of nobody being special, everyone is special. Instead of the many adoring the few, the whole adores each other and itself. Sometimes it isn't even adoration, is it, but perverse fascination. Dislike that borders on obsession. But celebrities are still fans, so there is no reason why fans can't be celebrities. That's why I like it here,' he flung his arm in the direction of the village, 'this is the closest thing to it. This is my dream world.' He looked at his wristwatch. 'Time for a mid-morning tea. Let's go to the house.'

      The conversation resumed as we went into the house, through the front door into a bright and spacious kitchen, a dining table and chairs at one end, the cooking appliances at the other. There was very little decoration to the room, but it was clean and pleasant.
      'I mean, it was ridiculous, the things that I did that were considered rebellious. It was mostly that I apparently didn't respect the fans. I didn't give them what I owed them, for their attention. It was like the world stole my privacy and then wanted paying for taking it off my hands. So of course I rebelled, wouldn't pose for pictures, wouldn't interact.
      'But that attention was too intense. Of course it's nice to be celebrated and admired. It's wonderful to be listened to. But it's unbalanced to have thousands concentrated on a hundred. It's not good for the ones in the spotlight, and it's a waste of all the ones in the dark.'

      Comment


        #6
        The second cleaner was a studious young girl called Josie, who wore pink framed glasses with thick lenses that magnified her blue eyes. Right away I noticed her Tag, which rarely left the palm of her hand, although was occasionally slipped into a back pocket. She had just finished school and was planning to start training as a nurse after the summer. She would sit on the step of her caravan with a stack of text books, alternating her attention between them, and the little round screen.
        We agreed to split the cleaning by day rather than shift, with her doing Saturday afternoon, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, while I took Wednesday to Friday, and Saturday morning.
        Unlike Toby, who treated everyone pretty much the same, whether they were eight or eighty, I could feel a definite wall between Josie and I. It was apparent that she saw me as an old woman. This was more mildly amusing than upsetting; it didn't matter to me that her tone became considered and polite when she spoke to me, or that she'd exclaimed that I had such good legs for my age.
        The last time I had interacted with the rest of society so closely, I had been young. How strange, to be treated so differently, almost with exagerated care, all because my body had aged. Had I done the same, when I was a teenager?
        Perhaps it is my eternal nature that erases the meaning of the divide between generations. For it is also the case that older people often speak to the young in a different manner than they speak to each other. And why? Aren't we all essentially the same? It isn't like I can understand all of the views and perceptions of my own generation, either. Yes, growing up in a different reality than the generation before or after creates a difference, but only the point that all else is relative too.
        I have a feeling society would run more smoothly, if minds were not closed off to the experience of being much younger or older. Isn't it just chance that we are born at the moment we're born? If we were born ten years earlier or later, we would be different people, with different ideas about things. In the generation before us, and after us, we can find different versions of ourselves.
        Last edited by Jessica; 04-30-2021, 11:32 AM.

        Comment


          #7
          For Variables readers ;-)

          'Jetaru. I think that the world is... strange. I have questions to which I find no answers. I have questions that nobody else asks. I don't know why that is. Here, look.' He went to the desk with his computer on it, and opened a drawer. He took out a sheaf of paper and brought it to me. 'I've tried to draw the world, but from the outside. Do you see what I mean? Most people are confused by what I mean.'
          I took the papers from him and began leafing through them. Mostly they were based around a kind of hourglass shape, as if the sea were the space around the hourglass, and the forest was the sand, with the city in the narrowest space through which the sand flowed.
          'I know what you mean,' I said.
          But an hourglass with no edges. A forest of sand that flowed from infinity to infinity, between the empty space of an infinite ocean. I looked up at Jeremy to find him looking at me, with intense wonder. Somehow, I thought, he knows. He doesn't know what he knows, but he knows. I took a deep breath, and I told him.
          I told him how this was not my real life, or my real body. I told him how I'd been born, almost a thousand years ago on a blue planet of mostly ocean, a globe spinning around in space, orbiting a star which we called the sun. And how on one side of the globe was one huge mass of land, so big, many thousands of miles from one side to the other. That there were five big cities across that land, and hundreds of thousands of smaller towns and villages.
          'I lived in Central City, as far from the ocean as you could get. When I was a teenager in this world, technology like we have today didn't exist. When I was a teenager in that world, we were further into the midst of it. I grew up with a device in my hand, playing in virtual playgrounds.
          'I came into adulthood at the last moment where the human race could have altered a terrible fate, but they didn't. We should have done better. We had all the means to save ourselves, to rise above our kill-or-be-killed mentality, but we didn't. We were sleepwalking in a dream where we had achieved peace, utopia, and so we stopped seeking within. We handed over our freedom, in exchange for this utopia.
          'When it went wrong, it went wrong in exactly the way it always had, and our captor was oblivious. There was no-one to save us, and only a handful of minds who could see how we could be saved. Not enough.'
          I fell silent, remembering. Of course, I had agonized over these memories for a hundred years, but that was long ago. Since then, I had found peace, and this was the first time I had revisited them.
          'I am the last surviving member of that species, of that planet. When I was born, the life expectancy for a woman was eighty-seven years. Through incredibly technological advancements, we achieved the avenue to near immortality. Of course, that was never public knowledge. The moral implications had never been addressed. But towards the end, in the chaos, I was able to... I was well positioned. I took risks. And I managed to leave the planet. At that point, I was one hundred and five years old, but to look at me I might have been thirty-five.'
          Jeremy was staring at me with a mix of wonder, horror, and excitement. I sensed no disbelief.
          'Go on, please,' he muttered.
          'It's hard to explain what happens next.'
          'Please, try.'
          'I hardly know, myself. The first part was... empty. I was heartbroken, in so many ways. Until I left the planet, I remained remarkably mentally strong. Once that blue globe was so far behind me that I could barely see it, something broke. I wondered what I was doing, why I had ever thought this would be worth it. Time became irrelevant. I began to think that I was alone, and would always be alone.
          'But space is not desolate. I was not alone.'
          I shook my head, unsure of how to continue. I looked up at Jeremy's ceiling, imagining the sky, imagining the stars.
          'There are so many worlds. There is so much life. Once you adjust your vision to see the Universe on a different scale, it seems as though it is alive itself. I learned new ways of thinking, new ways of being, new ways of communicating. I developed abilities that would seem like magical powers on my home planet. Eventually, nine hundred years later, I found myself at High Heights. It's like... a school. A University, perhaps. It isn't somewhere I could have found, to start out with. It's a place you can only find if you move along a different plane of being. It is where you learn the next step. Or, any one of several next steps.
          'I made a friend there. I made a few friends there. But this particular friend was specializing in world-building, very advanced studies. At the time, before... I don't think I realised really what he was doing. I was imagining it to be similar to the virtual reality worlds from my home. When he asked me if I would help him and be a volunteer in his project, I barely gave it a second thought, agreeing almost immediately. There were several other volunteers. We were told that we were going to go into an induced sleep, and experience a life time inside this world he had built.
          'You should be aware though, these are not clear memories. This is the result of years and years, here in my cabin in the forest, of meditating on certain dreams, and waking dreams, that feeling of something having happened before. Of putting these dream memories together with the experences of this world. Like you said yourself, it's strange. There are things that don't make sense. There are, what I believe, are clues. And I don't remember anything further than agreeing to take part. I don't remember actually taking part.
          'There are times I think I've made all this up. There are times when I am certain that this story is true. I'm aware, it must sound crazy.'

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