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Month: January 2020

Toni

The clack of nearby keyboards washed over Toni. She sat there, briefly hypnotized by the sound. A voice – the words indistinct – said something into a phone in a nearby cubicle. The sound of the voice was muffled by the material on the cube’s wall.

Toni scrolled through a Facebook feed which had not changed since she scrolled through it five seconds previously. She clicked on the next tab, and confirmed that the news headlines had also not changed. She clicked on the new tab button, and type “wiki” before the browser offered her the most-likely option, which she clicked on. She clicked the random article link, and was taken to an article about the Second Crusade.

Absent-mindedly she clicked on a link in the middle of the first paragraph, and did the same on the next six articles that appeared. Through Bavaria and Germany, she arrived at articles about the European Union. She wondered whether much time had passed, and looked at Facebook again. Nothing had changed on her feed.

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Huldufólk

The wind howled across the desolate winter landscape of Iceland. No trees to limit its progress, but glaciers to cool it, made the bite vicious. And the longer Gary stood on the exposed top of the hill, the deeper the teeth sunk in.

He dared, for a moment, to pull his glove forward to look at his watch, and slices of sharpened teeth dug into the gap between sleeve and glove. Gary knew he was waiting, but he didn’t remember how he got here, nor what he was waiting for.

Gary woke, with a start. Back in his bedroom in Reykjavik. He had moved to Iceland when the multi-national bank he worked for had bought an Icelandic bank, and he was given an opportunity to help integrate the new bank into the larger organization.

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Amanath and Hodor

There was once a man of incredible wealth and power. His name was Amanath. He was known throughout the village that he lived near. He could often be heard telling people about faraway lands where he was also known, and where the people also feared his power. No one in the village had ever seen these faraway lands, but they knew the powerful man mentioned them often and felt that they could not challenge him.

In the same village was a man who was a sycophant and was especially weak. His name was Hodor. He would walk around the village reminding people about the wealth and power of Amanath. The other people would grow tired of hearing Hodor’s words, but knew that attacking him might make Amanath angry.

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Observance – Part 1

Ryan noticed that there was a lot going on in the world, that other people didn’t seem to see. Or perhaps they didn’t care? Whatever it was, it was like everyone else walked through the world with misted glasses. He didn’t think this was arrogance – he didn’t feel pride in this situation – he was just aware of it.

Ryan would be in a shop, talking to the clerk while the air in the room moved in waves. The surge of air from one part of the room to another looked like a flock of starlings just before they roost for the evening. The door opening would bring not just a physical reaction, but a visible one.

Similarly, he would smell the moods of people that he met. The smell would even change while he was in a conversation with a person. As a child, Ryan had assumed this was normal, but a few strange looks from others, and he had learned not to talk about it in public.

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