Holographic Sky

Holographic Sky
By: Bastian Hafrey

He heard the sound wall break, and as he peered towards the sky, it fell. From every direction, streaks of fire burned through the atmosphere. Paralyzed from shock, he no longer knew where he was, nor how to walk. All he could do was peer towards burning mayhem above.

Humanity was isolated, not only from continents, but from the sky as well. It was however no surprise that humanity’s tenacity to grow strong in times of peril sung true. If there was tenacity, there was capacity. Life moved on.

The world turned from its reliance on technology to a reliance on humility over night.

Part of the ruined city was still habitable and bristling with life. Most however tried not to think of the reason why. With so many now dead, there was no shortage of supplies.

The broken down buildings of the less scarred part of the city had makeshift walls and roof of cloth and plastic sheets. Even now, six months after the event, repairs were underway, and people were considerably happy despite what they had lost. There was a unified eagerness to rebuild among all faces of the people.

On all faces, but Nathan’s.

Sure, he still had a job, he was still alive, and he still had his relationship to his long term girlfriend. The downside, which made him sour, was the fact that he, who had never sought a career in anything but photography, now had to sit around in his office, which had for the last three years been almost empty, now, he practically lived there as he identified and distributed photos of architectural value.

Six months, he thought. Six months …If I have to do this for one more week, I’ll succumb to the madness.

The evening light hit his office window, it was time to leave.

He had seen the madness in passing. People who had lost their mind in connection to the event. Those who caught it would preach doom to anyone who would pass their spot on the street. They had a certain fear in their voice and eyes, a fear that seemed almost contagious. Not that it was contagious, it would still take people, but the rate of affliction had dwindled considerably over time.

He left the office, and walked along the street. The sun was setting over the ruined building towards his apartment, which had miraculously remained whole in the aftermath, same couldn’t be said about his neighbors. With the late hours, he was almost thankful, almost. As it was merely a five minutes walk from the office, and a pleasant soft bed waited for him at home. The perfect remedy for exhaustion.

As he neared his apartment, he saw something at the corner of his eye. A sort of flux of colors in all their shades furiously vibrating. He turned to view the oddity, an entire structure across the street was cast in the strange phenomenon. A thought formed in his head, was it an optical illusion of some kind, perhaps gas was leaking nearby and the dwindling sunlight hit it precisely right to create such wonder? A man was walking past the building. Nathan called to the man, and pointed. The man turned his head, then continued to walk like it was nothing. Perhaps he couldn’t see it while he was so close?

Another street down, and he saw the same strange flux, this time only shrouding half a building, a half, that he vividly remembered being sheared off from one of the meteors six months ago.

What in the sky’s wrath is going on?

For six months, he had avoided to intentionally look towards the sky. After the event, the clouds had shifted to brown and black, with streaks of fire still burning like an endless thunder. Despite the strange sky, the sun had still beamed through like it was clear as day. Many said it wasn’t clouds, that no cloud could have formed after the event, instead, the atmosphere had been altered on the higher layers, and rayleigh scattering had turned to its current shape. What they said might be true, there hadn’t been a rainfall since.

He reminded himself with those words, and looked towards the sky.

The sky was in flux. He couldn’t determine color from the distance. It was more like the static from an old TV. He almost considered it beautiful, and then fright struck him like a hammer on his chest.

No…

Why me?

The realization sunk, he had been stricken by the madness.

***

The static flux reach with its tender tendrils to touch upon the Earth.

***

Nathan hadn’t left his apartment for days. He couldn’t conclude any reason why he should. After all, he was now insane.

Then his stomach voiced its opinion.

Fine.

As he left his apartment, he witnessed for the second time the tornado-like appendages of the sky. As he watched it touch, it created the colorful flux in its wake, then he heard a crash from behind.

He turned, and a homeless man he had never paid heed to before, stepped out. He was ragged, and looking towards the afflicted area.

“You see it?”

“Sky’s damnation, it will consume us all.”

Was that confirmation? Somewhere deep inside, he was still conflicted. He didn’t want to accept his own madness, he had locked himself away, hoping that it was merely exhaustion, dehydration, mania, hallucination, or a combination of all.

“The universe is dying,” The homeless man said. “No one remembers. No one can see.”

“See what?”

“The sky still falls,” The homeless man shrugged. “It never stop.”

“Oh.”

“The vortex robs the world of its wonders. Everyone forgets. Once, then existence is lost.”

“I need to go.”

Nathan turned away from the man and shook his head, then moved on. He had to get to his office, get a piece of food or chip, and then deal with whatever was happening to his brain. A full stomach would definitely clear his mind.

Had there always been so many of them? He thought.

On each street corner, away from the fluxed buildings, there were people in the shades, crawling in cardboard and rags.

Can they all see it? The world ripping apart?

He didn’t want to confront it yet, so he hurried on his way to the office.

It was still early, no one had arrived yet, not even his boss George, who was often strolling the long corridors all day, every day. Whispers said George lived in his office room, and Nathan had believed it to be true, in these times, it would had made sense if he had lost his home and moved in. After all, he refused Nathan on every occasion when he tried to enter his office.

Nathan entered the cafeteria and checked the refrigerator. The building had been leased a generator in sake of the architectural building plan. It was deemed a necessity to rebuild the city. The refrigerator was empty, save for a can of tuna. Nathan helped himself to the can.

Once, then existence is lost?

A scary thought entered his mind. What did the man mean? Did he mean that anything touched by the static is removed from existence, from mind? He shook it off, that couldn’t be true. Then wondered how his girlfriend was doing.

…I haven’t spoken to her in days.

He tried to remember why. Then he tried to remember her face. Her hair color. Her name.

It’s all gone

Every piece of memory of her was gone. The only thing he seemed to be able to remember was that he had a girlfriend. Or did he? Why did he think he had a girlfriend? Somewhere, he found a thread of four years of his life being dedicated to something, someone? But what? It couldn’t had been anything but a girlfriend? Could it?

Half the can of tuna was still on the table, as he raised himself and ran out of the building. He met George on the way, but he was running too fast to catch his words.

The five minute walk home took two minutes by sprint, he dashed up the stairs to the third floor, and into his apartment. There was no one there. No photos. A single bed. Clothes and dirt everywhere. A typical bachelor’s home.

Confirmation.

He thought, finally relaxing. He walked to his kitchen table and took a seat, looking out the window yet seeing nothing. Then his muscles tensed.

That, or whatever that man said is true. She has been ripped from reality. Caught by the vortex. Deleted from existence.

***

The street brimmed with people passing this way and that. They paid no heed to Nathan, nor anyone else of the mad loitering in the street corners and alleyways. There was a food stand nearby. Hotdogs. Nathan knew the distribution cycles, being part of the city rebuild project. The world was slowly crumbling around him, but he wouldn’t just give up on life. Not until the very end. However, rebuilding was fruitless, the flux slowly grew around him, so what would be the point of trying to build when destruction was certain? Whatever nameless sky god loomed the world, it was one of reckoning. Yet he figured he could survive on hotdogs long enough to witness the end. After all, it was free for the mad.

He watched the passing faces. They seemed like they had no concerns, no worries, only hope. If only he could feel that way, but as he thought about it, he realized he never had. Not after the event.

Then he recognized it. Her face. He knew that face. Was it his girlfriend? It had to be. It had to be her.

She was on the other side of the street. He tried to get out of his cardboard shelter, no matter how unseemly it was. He stumbled out but she moved too quickly for him to catch up. He called out for her. He called her name.

“Rachel!”

Was that her name? It had to be her name. Somehow, he affixed that name with that face. It felt so… Right?

He could feel tears boiling from his eyes, he wasn’t sure why it was so. He felt something inside him seeping out, a feeling he didn’t recognize, a feeling he knew, but no longer recognized? That was the woman he loved, that was the woman who had disappeared. She, who had been deleted by the sky.

“Rachel, wait!”

She ignored him, and continued to walk rapidly down the street. As Nathan made his way across, he saw her turn a corner. He scrambled his way there, and she was gone.

That was her right? That wasn’t an illusion. It couldn’t had been—right? But why didn’t she respond? Why didn’t she turn by name? If that was her name, she should have recognized her own name? Has her memory faded, like mine?

He closed his eyes where he stood, and then the world with all its sounds and smells and sensations vanished.

***

He stared up a white ceiling. He wasn’t sure for how long, hours? Seconds? Time seemed a fleeting concept. His head rested on a soft pillow, and his back on a soft surface. He felt with his hand and recognized a bed.

“Sky’s wrath,” He whispered. “Where am I?”

He sat up in the bed and looked around. It was a room familiar to him. He wasn’t sure exactly why it was familiar, but it was. Another lapse in memory?

Nathan left the bed and walked towards the door, but as he was about to open the portal, he staggered backwards. The flux. It seeped out from beneath and above the door with its endless fury. He looked around the room once more. There was a bookshelf, a bed, but no window.

Oh. This is my old room in my parents home. I haven’t been in here in years.

He instinctively looked up to the ceiling, next to the lamp was a trap door. A chill went down his spine when he realized the illumination of the room came from the flux and not from the lamp. Electricity wasn’t readily available in the city, and would definitely not be available out here. Their house was after all five miles from the city, surrounded by wheat fields and sparsely distributed farms.

He swung the trap door and climbed up, entering the loft. The breaking of the universe was apparently at the room behind the door downstairs and hadn’t reached up here. It was dark, save for the light streaming in from a small circular loft window. He found it rather peaceful and not at all as stressful as his imagination for the room behind the door.

He crawls his way to the window and squeezes through, ending up at the porch of the house. The garden at the front of the house, as well as the old kennel, and house fence stood clear of any flux. He turned to face the house, yet no visible flux there either. For the first time, he realized the flux could access areas not directly accessible from the sky.

The realization darkened his mind.

He took a seat on the porch steps, and heard footsteps from behind the fence bush. A man appeared, and stopped at the mailbox. It was his lawyer.

“Hello?”

“I am to deliver you this.”

Lloyd reached out a sheet of paper. Nathan left his seat and collected the sheet. As read the letter, it said his services was no longer required at behalf of the city.

“This,” Nathan indicated the paper. “Because I’m considered afflicted by madness?”

The lawyer remained quiet.

“Might as well,” Nathan said, shrugging. “I didn’t feel up to it anyway.”

With that, Lloyd turned to walk back toward his car.

Nathan scratched his head. This made little sense to him. How did his lawyer know to find him at his parents house? No matter. He crumpled the paper and threw it next to the mailbox. As he turned back to face the house, the house was gone. The entire area had been filled by the flux. It extended all the way from the house and out to the parameter of the mailbox. He wasn’t even a yard away from touching it. With a shriek, he jumped out to the road. Staring at the flux without thought.

Once his faculties collected themselves, he was left with a reminding question.

How did I end up here?

The harder he thought, the more his memories seemed to escape him. He knew this was his parents house. But he couldn’t remember them. He had parents, right? How else would he even exist? He knew his house was once right here, he grew up in it, but he couldn’t picture it, he couldn’t reach the memories, they were tucked away into some kind of void, and all attempts to reach them responded with an eerie feeling of retreat. No application of logic could fill the concept, no matter how hard he tried.

I am insane, after all.

Strangely, he realized he could remember everything from when he woke up to now, how it all happened. It wasn’t like with his memory of his girlfriend, that one was just gone, still is, somehow, kinda. He looked back to the mailbox again, and then it dawned on him. He finally had an opportunity to properly test the theory of the homeless man.

***

The lawyer was just about to step inside his car when Nathan caught up with him.

“How did you know where to find me?”

The lawyer looked thoughtful, but then casually shrugged it off. He said Nathan must have told him where he was. How else would he had known where to find him?

“You see the mailbox, yeah?” Nathan said, pointing at it. Lloyd nodded. “What of the land behind the mailbox, what do you see there?”

Loyd raised himself to see above the car roof, then turned to Nathan. “Why, it’s just land?”

“Alright,” Nathan said. “But if it’s just land, why would there be a fence and a mailbox there?”

“Perhaps whoever owns the land never got around setting up a house?”

“Surely it’s an odd thing to put the mailbox first and the house later?”

Lloyd shrugged. “If you’ll excuse me.” He entered the car, started the engine, then drove off. Seemingly in a hurry.

I think I get it now. People, the people who don’t see, the people who don’t understand. They fill the void with conclusions. They ignore what isn’t there, their mind wraps it up into a fine little explanation. Whatever gets erased gets erased permanently, along with all interactions to whatever it was. These people, they are outside reality, their realm of consciousness is adapted to the way the universe used to be, not how the universe is now.

Nathan has reached a conundrum. While his girlfriend was still a piece of memory, in a way. He did eventually see her. Perhaps her memory was as scrubbed as his, and she refused to recognize him, or perhaps her memory had merely filled the void. Only someone struck with madness could see further, have a better understanding? But if that was the case, maybe his parents still existed? They had just forgotten. Unless.. Unless they were eaten by whatever it is that is breaking reality apart. He didn’t want to think along those lines. Not yet, anyway.

He cursed quietly to himself, his stomach was complaining again. He looked towards the sun as it beamed through the static. It was early morning, apparently. He reached for his wallet, which he carried in his chest pocket. Five dollars. Seems enough.

***

Strolling down the street, he came across the petroleum station which he used to hang around as a teenager. Granted, there were only three children around his age at the time, but they had made it a point to always meet and chit chat outside the station.

Some young guy was working the registry, Nathan placed his coin down firmly and had the guy warm him a hotpocket and a cup of coffee. In the middle of devouring his snack, getting sauce all over his shirt, he realized something he forgot to concern himself with,

How in the sky’s wrath did I end up all the way out here anyway?!

***

Nathan was jogging. Slightly amazed at his own physiques after all that time sitting around the office and then loitering the streets in a cardboard castle. It would take him all day to get back walking, especially since the populated part of the city was on the opposite of the farmland. He considered for a moment, perhaps he should abandoned the corner, go back to his apartment. He had seen his girlfriend, maybe her memory was foggy but maybe, just maybe, she would remember him? Where she used to live? He had to get back there, to wait for her for a few days, and if she doesn’t come, go back to the street corner and pray she walks by once more.

The thought made his jog turn into long strides. He wanted to get home faster. What if she was already there? If only he could take even longer strides, be home within the hour.

Minutes pass, deep in thought, but as his mind returns to confront the environment he loses control of his balance. His stride had increased alright, he was in the middle of a leap reaching more than seven yards per step. He stumbles to the ground, yet the ground hit soft.

Why was it soft? He was on the road, asphalt and dirt all around him. He felt with his hand. Grass. How come it’s grass?

He looks around. He had landed in a circular patch of grass in the middle of the road, was it always there? His eyes then meet with the very same homeless man who spoke of damnation.

“You see the truth now?”

Nathan slowly nods.

What truth?

Did the man mean the grass? Or something else entirely?

What in the sky’s wrath is up with the grass anyway? Where did it come from!?

“Old man,” Nathan said, speaking with uncertainty in his voice. “Did you make the grass appear?”

“We are all remnants of the old God, left behind,” He said, looking up towards the sky. “Then invaded by his brethren.”

Nathan followed his view to the sky, the ever tumbling, ever folding. Its many tendrils touching the Earth. The omnipresent old TV static. It was as if the very fabric of reality, of existence, had found a way to cease the natural laws.

As he lowered his eyes back down to the man, he was gone.

‘Remnants of the old god’ he said. Ugh—try to make sense!

Nathan pushed himself up from the grass, then tried to take on the leaps again, but it didn’t work. How had he done it before? He closed his eyes, imagining himself what he did before, then, eyes still closed, he took up the strides.

If he could get it to work, regain control of that strange power. He would be able to get back home in no time, hopefully before his girlfriend came by, if she ever would. Then he opened his eyes and gasped in shock.

***

He was falling, his balance lost. He wasn’t on the road anymore, but he distinctly recognized the locale. As he hit the floor, he tumbled into a door. His door. On the third floor.

Before he got up, he started to contemplate once more. Had anything he just experienced been real? Or was he truly so insane that he could not even recognize he had been home all along. Perhaps the sky was clear outside, and everything dandy? Had it all been a nightmare? He looked around frantically, in case there was someone nearby, someone who could tell him his state of mind more implicitly. There was no one. He raises himself back up on his feet, and fingers his other chest pocket. As his fingers touched, they felt sticky. He looked down on his shirt, sauce, all over the place. It had all been real? With a sigh he fished his keys out, and fumbled on the door.

But I had a hotpocket in my fridge right? I did? Right? Maybe I ate it, imagined all this crap, and crashed my way out the apartment?

As he entered the room, it was as he remembered it from before, clothes all over the place, a single bed, no sources of light save for the windows, and no electricity. He lazily walked with disappointedly towards the fridge, knowing full well what to expect, telling himself that hope would be stupid, but even then, still holding a glimpse of hope at heart.

He opened the fridge, empty. Warm. Stupid.

He took a seat at the kitchen table, wallowing over the day and his strange experience. He had been lost in thought and somehow learned to almost fly? He had closed his eyes and somehow teleported back home?

He closed his eyes, imagining the face of his girlfriend, or at least that of the woman he saw before. Perhaps, if he genuinely believed in it, she would appear? As he opened his eyes he was met by another disappointment. She was no where to be seen.

Wait.

There was a photo on the kitchen windowsill. A photo of him, and a woman. His girlfriend? He was sure of it. Confirmation. She was real, his strange power was real, it was all real. Everything thus far, was the truth. He wasn’t insane, he was one of the few who had clarity, who could see reality fall apart around him. It wasn’t just in his mind, it was truly, genuinely, real. A flutter of joy filled his heart.

He closed his eyes once more, trying to grab at memories of how it once had been, before she had disappeared. As he opened his eyes again, the apartment was filled with photos of them together. The single bed turned into a double bed.

Everything was falling into place. With reality breaking apart, he was no longer part of it, he was beyond it!

***

He imagined himself inside his office room, a few moments later, there he was.

They hadn’t waited around, his stuff was gone, it was emptied out, even the desk. He left his office room and strolled out into the corridor, where he was met by George.

His boss stared at him, eyes wild.

“Who are you?!”

“Ehm, you fired me earlier today.”

“I did no such thing, someone,” He eyed Nathan’s attire. “Of your …wardrobe—would never be allowed to work in an establishment such as this.”

“Uh, George, I’ve been an employee for five years and one of your best photographers.”

He regards me like I’ve been lost in the flux. Did that happen? When? How am I still here? Was that what happened to Rachel—why I forgot about her? Am I another fleeting memory of a person that once existed, swallowed by the crumbling reality? Is that the foundation of my madness, my power?

“It would seem I have a memory of someone being my best, but, it was never a competition?”

“Regardless,” Nathan said. “I didn’t come to argue, it was merely an experiment.”

George had since stopped paying attention, hollering for security. Nathan made his way to the spiral staircase which lead to the entrance floor. Before he went down the stairs, he saw George pointing an angry finger in his direction, screaming for the security guard who came up from behind his boss.

As Nathan ran down the stairs, he pauses, he was so caught up in his escape to remember how he got there. He imagined himself somewhere else. Somewhere, where his girlfriend would be. After all, her face was now burned into his mind.

***

Salty air?

He swirled around, the sand was pristine, the ocean light blue, the sky azure. There were no palms or life as far as he could see, except for a woman laying in a sun chair, black bikini, long blond hair, and sunglasses.

He walked up to her, pulled a towel from the back of the chair, flattened it next to her and took seat.

“Rachel?”

She moved her sunglass down and looked at him with judging eyes, then resumed her sunbathing. He turned to the sun, letting the sensation of warmth tend to his skin.

“Hello …Nathan?” She suggested, seeming somewhat unsure in her tone.

“Did you watch the world end?”

“I did.”

Time passes without a word. He felt so comfortable, so serene. She spoke again.

“How did you see it?”

“I’m sorry it took me so long.” Nathan said, pausing. “I realized you weren’t there, that’s how it happened. For the longest time I couldn’t understand why or who you were, just that …you were missing. Like a pain of loss in my heart. Then the world changed.”

“That’s how it works,” She said, letting out a pleasant sigh. “My brother, I knew I had one, but he wasn’t there anymore. I couldn’t understand how I had a memory of someone that supposedly was never even born. No name, no face, no nothing, just a small, tender, memory of a person I knew I loved, yet never existed. There was no refuge in any form of logic.”

“So it’s love that invokes the awakening?”

“I suppose it is, or the illogic of love. I tried to talk with you before, Nathan, it’s Nathan right? My memory of you seem to have faded. I wonder when?— Anyhow, you wouldn’t listen to me. It was like talking to a person outside of the appropriate response pattern. Like talking to a machine. No matter the proposition, if it didn’t fall within your interaction of the reality that once was, you would be dismissive and unresponsive. Everyone was like that, it wasn’t just you.”

“I had that before, with my lawyer, and then with my boss.” Nathan paused, briefly. “Is that why you left? Abandoned me? Ignoring my calls as you went by? So that I would be able to see, to awaken?”

“Don’t complain,” She said playfully. “It worked, didn’t it?”

“How did you know I would find you here? Actually, where is here?”

“I didn’t, I think? For some reason I can’t remember you you, just our interactions and my plans from before.” She paused. “You know, here is a matter of point. You came here the same way this place was created.”

“Thats …impressive.”

You have no idea. This is my dream world, my imagination. A place I could seek refuge. I went back once, looking for my brother, but as soon as I found my way back there, I heard someone call after me. I wasn’t sure who it were, I had a feeling, but no certainty, all I knew was a stab of emotional pain.”

“It was recently after I saw the crumbling reality, you were there, in the middle of the street, so I called out, somehow remembering your name. I guess I still had a long way to go.”

The sun was as soothing as the real one, or perhaps a world created by her was equally real. After all, who knew what was genuinely real nowadays anyway?

“What of your brother then?”

“I fear he has been swallowed by a rift.”

“It’s more like a flux.”

“My sanctuary, my rules.”

Nathan chuckled however inappropriate it might had been. The memories of her were returning to him, pulsing, like a heartbeat. He was sure she felt the same way.

“You are every bit as complicated as I remember.”

“You, every bit as annoying.” She moved her sunglasses down and turned to Nathan again, there was a smile on her lips, then it morphed to a frown. “Despite our power to create, to bend the laws of physics, we can’t create nor move anything living, just inanimate matter.”

“That’s a shame.”

He decided to tell her of his experience, of his awakening, and of his strange uncontrollable obsession with her. She laughed heartedly.

“I’m not sure if this place will remain once the universe come crashing in on itself,” She said. “I am hopeful though, after all, I designed this place by my own standard of perfection, save for, well, all the life that’s missing in it, like palms and flowers and birds and all that. That, and my brother.”

“Well, like I said, I found you by my imagination to be where you were. Perhaps you could reach your brother the same way?”

Rachel was quiet for a while. She tried to reach her brother, to imagine herself with him. If he was gone, then her whole family was gone. He had raised her, after their parents had died in an alpine accident when she was a child.

“It’s… It doesn’t work.” There was sorrow in her voice. “He might really be lost on us, forever.”

Nathan pondered a moment. He had tried to summon Rachel before, without success. She also said she couldn’t bring any form of life here. However, regardless of the failures, he had managed to grab his memory, to conjure the photos into his apartment, photos he didn’t know existed until they were there, hidden, somewhere, deep inside his memory. Perhaps he had realized she was gone the moment she left, as if she stepped into the flux. Perhaps this was some kind of flux, a space within? Not that he wanted to try and enter the flux intentionally, that would be too much of a risk, but what if this place was like that? A person had to leave the old reality, and anyone connected to them on a deep emotional level would question the logic, awaken into a different, frightening, reality.

He sunk together, sadness fell over him. Perhaps those who entered the flux were gone forever? His parents, maybe they were gone too? It was a plausible possibility. But even then, could exist in an incomplete flux realm of some kind? What about life here? Together with Rachel? Would they grow old together? Were they immortal in this space, where laws of physics no longer applied? Laws of physics… There are no laws, reality is breaking apart! They might not know the full extent of their new found power to alter reality around them, but there had to be a way, after all, the memories were there, faded, but there! He imagined Rachel’s sun chair moved to his left instead of his right.

Rachel let out a quiet yelp. She had moved to his left, chair and all.

“What did you do!”

“If someone walked into one of those rifts of broken reality, are they truly lost forever? How then, could we remember an essence of their existence? They have to exist in some form! So I thought, if I move what you lay on, instead of moving you as a whole, then perhaps I can move you? I mean, that’s technically how I moved myself around, teleporting, isn’t it? Either way, it worked!”

She immediately closed her eyes, moments later, a boat splashed in the shallow water a distance from the beach, it carried a man.

“It would seem we’re some kind of demigods, my goddess.” Nathan said with a smile.

“Life is complex, especially the chemical structure of our emotions. Perhaps that’s what held us back?” Rachel said, then she stood from the chair and hollered to the boat. “Hey, do you recognize me!”

“Rachel? What’s going on?” Her brother said.

“It’s really working!” Rachel expressed with glee. “It really, really, worked!”

“Whats with the boat though?” Nathan asked.

“Why not?”

“Well, couldn’t you just have set him down on the beach?”

“I imagined him floating around in some kind of aether, a strange dimension of space outside of our old universe. Of course he had to have a boat, so I imagined him on a boat, and then I brought the boat here.”

“Makes sense.” Nathan said, then excitedly did the same as her. He reached into his heart, he couldn’t quite pin his emotions on a single individual, he didn’t have enough memory for that, so he just told himself that he had to put everyone within his heart on a boat indiscriminately, then summoned the boat. Moments later, a boat appeared, with two older people, his parents presumably, and Rachel.

“What in sky’s wrath was that for!” Rachel yelled to the shore.

Nathan smiled contentedly. He could feel the pulses of memory seeping into his mind increase with a much wider pressure, they were warm, and soothing.

There was a bark.

He looked more carefully towards the boat, and saw a dogs head poking out. It was old scruffy, his parents dog!

Suddenly, he was falling through the air, with a piece of towel thrashing beneath him, then a rush of water consumed him as he hit the surface. He breached for air, looking around. He was a few paces from the boat with Rachel and his parents, and she smiled devilishly towards him.

This new way of life could be fun.

He swam to the shallow and helped the boat to the beach.

“Now that we know we can bring life here,” Nathan said, smiling. “As goddess of our realm, it is high order that you furnish.”

And so she did.

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