You are out of breath, but you push on anyway. It has been too long since you cycled through this part of the woods and you want to see the view of the valley from the top of the hill, before the weather gives way.\n\nYour wheels skid a little in the dirt and all your weight pushing down on the pedals seems barely enough to bring the bike further up the track. You get off and start pushing.\n\nYou hear the wind blowing through all the trees around you. You stop moving, close your eyes and let the sound and the feeling of the breeze wash over you.\n\nIt is nice to get away sometimes.\n\nThe first drops of rain hit your arms, you know you've missed your chance, but you decide to go for the top anyway... you've come this far, after all.\n\nBy the time you reach the top, the drips of rain have become a huge downpour. Thousands of splashes every second thunder through the woods around you and your view across the valley is significantly dimmed by the rain. But in it's own way you feel the view before you is just as special.\n\nLight shimmers off the falling sheets of water before you as though nature is waving a thunderous silver curtain across the world.\n\nYou are freezing cold, but content. You decide to bike through the country more often, if you can find the time.\n\n<<set $visitedbike = 1>>\n[[...|guide]]
One of the things attached to the twisted metal thing seems to be a wheel. You feel odd about it, the wheel has slowed and now stopped spinning. You wish it could have kept spinning.\n\n\nA bright white light surrounds you, pushing everything else away.\n[[Allow the white light to engulf you|bikememory]]\n[[Step away|theScene]]
<<set $visitedroad = 1>>"Luce, hold on to my hand now."\n\nThe man holds his hand out towards you, he is easily three times your height and blots out the bright sun. You feel a little safer whenever you're in his shadow.\n\n"I mean it Luce, you know we can't cross if you don't hold my hand."\n\nYou look out into the road just as a large lorry rumbles past at a frightening speed. You jump, grabbing hold of the man's leg tightly.\n\n"It's OK," the man smiles down to you, "The road is dangerous, but if you hold my hand and do as I say, we can get to the other side safely."\n\nYou nod to the kind man, he's never let you down before. You put your hand in his and feel his firm, reassuring grip.\n\nThe two of you wait until the road is empty and cross it together, you marvel at how brave grown-ups are, when they can cross such a scary road even without anyone holding their hand.\n\n[[...|guide]]
Runcible Sky
There are many people here, they seem to buzz and shake like a nest of bees. You wonder why they have stopped here, don't they have their own lives to live?\n\n\nA bright white light surrounds you, pushing everything else away.\n[[Allow the white light to engulf you|crowdmemory]]\n[[Step away|theScene]]
"Mum! I'm back from Marie's!"\n\nYou close the front door and drop your rucksack onto the sofa.\n\n"We were up pretty late last night, she sai-"\n\nYou see your mother in a way you haven't ever seen her before. She is lying at the bottom of the stairs, face to the floor and her legs trailing up the bottom two steps. You rush over to her and she is cold to the touch. The floor is a little damp and there is an unpleasant smell.\n\nThings start to blur, you are desperately making a phone call, you are trying to remember your address, someone is giving you instructions, you try to turn your mother onto her back but she is too heavy, the smell gets worse, you are pushing down on her chest like the person on the phone says, you are hoping you do it right, every moment you want nothing more than for your mother to just start moving again.\n\n...\n\nThe man from the ambulance seems nice, but he doesn't have anything nice to say, and he can't help your mother.\n\n\n<<set $visitedambulance = 1>>\n[[...|guide]]
body { background-color: grey }\n\n.passage{\n width: 400;\n text-align: justify;\n background-color: black;\n border-radius: 15px;\n padding: 15px;\n}
<<silently>>\n<<set $progress = 0>>\n<<if $visitedroad eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedambulance eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visiteddriver eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedoldman eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedlucy eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedcrowd eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedbike eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<endsilently>><<if $progress eq 0>>\nYou are formless, at least as far as you can tell. You feel perhaps you are supposed to have a body, so you do your best to act as you imagine an embodied person would.\n\nsurrounding you are vague shapes and hazy, distant echoes.\nYou try to perceive them more clearly, but viewed all together they are as formless as you.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 1>>\nYou are more than formless, but 'who' or 'what' you are, you don't quite know. You feel these things applied to you at one point but 'why' they ever mattered is another concept that escapes you.\n\nYou are surrounded again vague shapes and hazy, distant echoes.\nAs you try to make them out, they seem to become slightly clearer. Or at least... sharper.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 2>>\nYou reach out, but your action has no impact on the universe. You begin to feel it though, it feels... numb.\n\nThe shapes surround you again. You move between them, trying to discern their true forms. As you observe they seem to move, as if in slow motion.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 3>>\nYou suddenly remember a word, one you associated with yourself. "Girl"... a clue to who you are perhaps? It doesn't feel like a name though, you feel a name would be better.\n\nThe shapes around you begin to feel... solid. The sounds they emit become more focussed. You want them to be a little less solid; if they become brighter, louder... it seems it would be painful.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 4>>\nYour head is aching, did you have a head? You must, surely a head is something a girl, one with a body, is meant to have... But is a head meant to ache this much?\n\nThe shapes around you are becoming more clear; to your eyes they are bright and sting, to your ears they are loud and painful. Your memories however are starting to tell you what the shapes are.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 5>>\nYour aching head is wet, and the rest of you feels mostly numb, but with a freezing cold just encroaching on the edges of your senses. You are being held.\n\nYou hate the forms and shapes around you. You can't think why but they are NOT supposed to be there, not like this. You wish they would leave you alone.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 6>>\nYou can feel the blood flow down the side of your face, like everything else you experience now it is cold and unpleasant. Looking up you see the face of an old man, he isn't saying anything but you can tell he wants you to feel better. It is clear to both of you; that won't happen.\n\nThe other things around you are starting to fade, neither your memories or your senses will tell you what they are anymore. This may be your last chance to try and gaze at them.<<endif>><<if $progress eq 7>>\nYou are alone. Or perhaps, everyone else is alone without you?\nFor a moment, you wonder if you should feel sad for not getting a chance to say goodbye, but you realise everyone you cared about knows how you felt.\n\nYou decide that this is OK, as far as final thoughts go.\n<<endif>>\n\n<<if $progress lte 6>><<if $visitedroad eq 0>>[[Beneath you is a large, grey lake.|road]]<<else>>[[Beneath you is the cold tarmac.|road]]<<endif>>\n<<if $visitedambulance eq 0>>[[Before you there is something large and white, with green blurs flowing from it.|ambulance]]<<else>>[[Before you is the white vehicle, with green green men rushing out of it.|ambulance]]<<endif>>\n<<if $visiteddriver eq 0>>[[To your left, a large red shape, and black fuzz beside it.|driver]]<<else>>[[To your left, the red car, and crying man.|driver]]<<endif>>\n<<if $visitedoldman eq 0>>[[To your right, a brownish fuzz.|oldman]]<<else>>[[To your right, the frail man.|oldman]]<<endif>>\n<<if $visitedoldman eq 0>><<if $visitedlucy eq 0>>[[Beneath the brownish fuzz, you sense something, cold.|lucy]]<<else>>[[Beneath the brownish fuzz, the injured girl.|lucy]]<<endif>><<else>><<if $visitedlucy eq 0>>[[Beneath the frail man, you sense something, cold.|lucy]]<<else>>[[Beneath the frail man, the injured girl.|lucy]]<<endif>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedcrowd eq 0>>[[Behind you are many colours, so many they seem to merge together.|crowd]]<<else>>[[Behind you is the crowd.|crowd]]<<endif>>\n<<if $visitedbike eq 0>>[[At your feet is something twisted and wirey.|bike]]<<else>>[[At your feet is the twisted bicycle.|bike]]<<endif>><<endif>>\n\n<<if $progress lte 6>>You are not yet ready to leave.<<else>>[[You are ready to leave.|leave]]<<endif>>
A shiny red vehicle, you decide is a "car", is not far from you. Beside it is a man, he appears to be very distressed.\n\n\nA bright white light surrounds you, pushing everything else away.\n[[Allow the white light to engulf you|drivermemory]]\n[[Step away|theScene]]
There is an injured girl here. Her hair is wet, stained red.\n\n\nA bright white light surrounds you, pushing everything else away.\n[[Allow the white light to engulf you|lucymemory]]\n[[Step away|theScene]]
"Get up already, you're going to be late!"\n\nYou shoot up in your bed and look at the clock, the alarm didn't go off.\n\n"Thanks for waking me, I really shouldn't rely on this thing." You curse the clock and make a mental note to get a working one if your interview goes well.\n\n"I'm done with the shower, so the bathroom is yours, Luce."\n\nYou look to your friend and give her your best grimmace. "So you waited till you had showered before waking me? That is so like you, Marie!"\n\n"Well duh, can't have you hogging it and being all 'I'm Lucy, I have an important interview today so I shall be commandeering the bathroom until further notice!'"\n\n"I only did that once!"\n\n"You realise time hasn't stopped, don't you?"\n\n"Shit!" You fly out of bed, attend to your business in the bathroom as fast as you can and put on the smart clothes you picked out last night.\n\n"See ya!" you wave to Marie as you leave the front door, she turns from her painting, toast in mouth, to see you off.\n\nYou climb on your bike and head off, checking the directions you printed off last night. This won't be your dream job, but at least you'll be able to pay the rent if you can get it.\n\n\n<<set $visiteddriver = 1>>\n[[...|guide]]
<<silently>>\n<<set $progress = 0>>\n<<set $visitedroad = 0>>\n<<set $visitedambulance = 0>>\n<<set $visiteddriver = 0>>\n<<set $visitedoldman = 0>>\n<<set $visitedlucy = 0>>\n<<set $visitedcrowd = 0>>\n<<set $visitedbike = 0>>\n<<endsilently>>Don't be afraid, it's only nothingness.\n\n[[...|theScene]]
There is a frail old man, standing over something. He seems sad.\n\n\nA bright white light surrounds you, pushing everything else away.\n[[Allow the white light to engulf you|oldmanmemory]]\n[[Step away|theScene]]
"But the Princess wasn't fast enough, and the evil witch pushed the Prince off the bridge. The princess wa-"\n\n"No, that's not right!" You grab hold of your grandfather's sleeve, upset. "That's not meant to happen!"\n\nHe looks down at you and smiles, though a little sadly.\n\n"Child, sometimes things happen that aren't meant to. Haven't you ever tripped and fallen? Bad things happen to everyone I'm afraid."\n\n"But, it's a story! bad things don't have to happen, you could just make the story different!" You protest, and tug at his sleeve tightly. But he doesn't seem like he is going to budge. "Please, give it a happy ending! I don't want the Princess to be unhappy!"\n\nYour grandfather puts his hand on your head gently and says "She will be happy again. That is the point of this story child."\n\n"The point?"\n\n"Stories aren't just meant to make us feel better Lucy, the best stories have a lesson in them somewhere. And I only tell the best stories of course."\n\nYou loosen your grip on his sleeve, and feel a little bad that you've wrinkled his nicely pressed shirt.\n\n"Sometimes bad things happen, they will make us unhappy. But they aren't the end, good things will happen again... well, so long as you let me finish the story." The old man grins.\n\n\n<<set $visitedoldman = 1>>\n[[...|guide]]
The music is almost deafening and the heat is getting to you, you push through the bodies of everyone crowded around the dance floor and make your way towards the doorway.\n\nYou stop just inside the doorway, Marie is still somewhere inside the club and you want her to be able to find you when she comes looking for you.\n\nThe door is open and the cold night air blows through, a great relief for you; stuffy hot clubs have never been something you really liked, but your best friend is into it and likes it when you come.\n\nA little closer to the door, and leaning against the wall reading his phone is a pretty cute guy. When he looks up from his phone you realise you've been staring at him. You smile nervously and pull out your own phone and pretend to read it. The next time you look up, you catch him staring, and this time he is the one to smile nervously.\n\n"Danny-boy! We're moving on to the next one!"\n\nA group of guys lurch from the dancefloor towards the cute guy, he smiles at you and waves goodbye as his friends pull him through the door and towards whichever alcohol-rich place they are headed next.\n\nYou think about chasing after them and giving the cute guy your number, but decide against it. It's weird to do that after a couple of smiles... isn't it?\n\nYou curse not knowing what is acceptable at these club... party... things. But you doubly curse how it's no good thinking shy guys are cute, and being shy yourself.\n\nMarie has drunk too much this night, you help her home and make sure she's OK until she is done throwing up.\n\n<<set $visitedcrowd = 1>>\n[[...|guide]]
There appears to be some kind of large white vehicle. There are men wearing bright green rushing out of it, though they seem almost frozen in time.\n\n\nA bright white light surrounds you, pushing everything else away.\n[[Allow the white light to engulf you|ambulancememory]]\n[[Step away|theScene]]
Sophie Houlden
"So what do you want to do then? when you graduate I mean?"\n\nYou look away from your easel towards the inquisitive girl with the dark curly hair.\n\n"I'm doing it." You gesture with your brush to your canvas, a little ashamed of the quality of your work. You'd hoped to have your skill further along than this for the first day of college.\n\n"Nice, me too!" The girl beams.\n\nYou lean back and take a look at her work. It's a fairly simple piece, but the way it has been constructed is very powerful. Her technique is clearly a little lacking, but her passion more than makes up for it.\n\n"Wow."\n\n"You like it?" The girl scratches her head a little nervously. "I've always painted really, Gran always gave me paints instead of crayons, so I have a lot of practice."\n\n'Rather than practice, it's more like she's comfortable speaking in paint' you think to yourself.\n\n"I'm Lucy by the way." You hold out your hand and smile.\n\n"Marie." The girl smiles back.\n\nYou're glad you could find someone so friendly and interesting on your first day.\n\n\n<<set $visitedlucy = 1>>\n[[...|guide]]
<<silently>>\n<<set $progress = 0>>\n<<if $visitedroad eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedambulance eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visiteddriver eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedoldman eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedlucy eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedcrowd eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<if $visitedbike eq 1>><<set $progress = $progress + 1>><<endif>>\n<<endsilently>><<if $progress eq 1>>\nMemories are strange...\n\nDo you think perhaps that the only things of value, are the memories you have in your final moments?\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 2>>\nThere is no real infinity, nobody will live forever.\n\nBut don't fret, even if the universe is going to end, time cannot be unmade. All the things you have done, thought and felt have been firmly etched into time.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 3>>\nDon't hold out hope for an afterlife that probably isn't there, that is for people who have time to avoid thinking about death.\n\nBut when you are staring down at oblivion, your time is more important.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 4>>\nIt is OK to remember the good things, and it's OK to remember the bad things, it's OK that you won't remember everything.\n\nYou have already had everything, this right now is just... extra.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 5>>\nI am sorry that these moments are all I can give you.\n\nI made this system to help people in your position, but this is all I can do. Nobody is all-powerful.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 6>>\nYou don't have long left, so I shall tell you the most comforting thing I know.\n\nDeath isn't an infinity of nothingness, it only lasts a moment. You will never experience anything that isn't being alive.\n<<endif>><<if $progress eq 7>>\nDon't be afraid, it's only nothingness.\n<<endif>>\n\n[[...|theScene]]
The grey surface beneath you is hard, and cold to touch. Your memory tells you that this is a "road".\n\n\nA bright white light surrounds you, pushing everything else away.\n[[Allow the white light to engulf you|roadmemory]]\n[[Step away|theScene]]