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Crisis In Infinite Plexes - Second Echo


Police Commissioner George stared at the screen on his cellphone. Tapped in the code to activate the custom application – the 'Shift-Signal' he called it. It played a muzak version of an old Crystal Method song while it transmitted the data, making a mash-up with the chatter coming in over the cruiser's radio, realtime reports of the disaster occurring only blocks away in downtown Plex City, the app recording those reports, adding them to the signal along with GPS and video from the phone's camera, sending them as a digital recon of the perimeter of A.T.T.A.C.K.'s attack.

An icon of a wing appeared in the corner of the screen, then a voice. “Thank you for the update, Commissioner,” Seraphim said.

George nudged the officer at the wheel, gestured for him to take a left, driving slowly through clusters of running citizens, rubble and debris. There was another explosion from somewhere up ahead, the ground shaking, more smoke rising.

George shook his head, spoke into his phone. “I need more info from your end, ma'am. I can't coordinate evac and containment if I don't know-”

“Hold on,” she said, that authority in her voice that comforted him and made him feel insignificant at the same time. The waveform icon appeared below the wing as Channel joined the call.

“Commissioner,” he said. “Please take a deep breath – I am preparing to transmit information from my optic nerve into your visual cortex.”

The Seraphim leaping from the Holo-Copter as The Channel links her to the vehicle's hover-technology and she descends into the pitched battle below where The Tower deflects a barrage of missiles from Mode's shoulder-mounted cannons and even bends the curve of his autonic shield to ricochet one of the warheads towards Ashen who is trading blows with The Silhouette who becomes incorporeal just as the redirected missile explodes and stuns the villain and leaves him vulnerable until Pyre's energy-emitters ignite a modulating protective circle around Ashen that blocks even The Silhouette except that The Seraphim glides in from above and manages to grasp the dazed foe with her autonic touch and immobilize them leaving The Heretic to charge towards Pyre only to be intercepted by the spinning and slicing sabres of Cadre while The Tower fends off another assault from Mode coupled with a neuro-scattering pulse from Clean and Pyre gets support against The Heretic from a squad of Acer murder-drones...

“You're outnumbered,” George said, realizing how stupid he sounded stating the obvious. “Where's The Shifter?”

There was a pause as Channel banked the Holo-copter to fire a blast of disruptor chaff at the Acers. “He never reappeared after he teleported from our base.” The situation was too dire for Channel to continue keeping the Commissioner at arm's-length. “He's been missing the entire battle. It's the longest he's ever been gone...”

“My God, what is going on? How are we going to survive this?” George glanced at the officer who was driving, Sgt. Trump. Trump hadn't seen the vision of the battle but he had heard what was said. He looked scared.

“Commissioner,” Seraphim said, still on the line even as she floated up over Pyre's barrier to continue the fight. “We are going to have to attempt the Dragon Protocol.”

George gulped.


Crisis In Infinite Plexes - Anomaly Two

Pretty blinks in the way that calls up his retinal HUD. Fingers in the pocket of his fluffy coat scratching quickly, wearing the thimbles that sync with his custom Cortex. The streams and runes of the HUD flashing and flowing over the view from the back of the cab of the neon-baked slow-motion disaster that is Ruffo Street on a Friday night in Omegatropolis. Scratch, scratch, flash and Max's icon appears in the HUD. A tiny image of Dali's 'Corpus Hypercubus'. A squad of Corporate Security thugs descends on a herd of pedestrians for failing to have the funds available for a moments-ago-voted-in crowd tax. The cab takes a right to avoid the violence.

The icon becomes a tiny sim of Max when he connects. “Heya,” his voice sounds in Pretty's ear.

“One sec,” Pretty murmurs, scratching in his pocket, opening a second channel, tasking a Grid-bot to contact and hire a low-level Meta from his roster to start doing recon on the votes that secured this new tax. 

The sim of Max yawns. Gunfire and screams from Ruffo Street. Pretty shifts his jaw to adjust the volume, violence on low, the pings from the bot in the middle-ground, Max's voice priority. “Okay... It's bad.”

The sim of Max blinks. “I'm on my way.”

They use an encrypted revolving code based on the Zodiac to determine which Diner to meet at depending on the day, the weather, and the current ratio of Cold vs Hot Wars occurring across the globe. Diners are expensive, the novelty of being waited on by mostly-flesh-and-blood servers, but it is a tradition with them, dating back to before the fall of Legacy.

When Pretty slides into the booth he can tell that it's Marshal sitting there; he can always tell when Max is running one of the Polysonae. Marshal's thimbled fingers trace patterns in the air, like many of the other customers as they dial in feeds, run searches, play games, send messages, everyday life in the Grid, except Marshal is weaving a Mesh around the Diner that erases his presence, and Pretty's, from the local Nexus. He wears display glasses to look lo-fi but they're actually designer scramblers to add an extra layer of security to what's going on in his Cortex. Pretty calls to Kelly – he knows every server at every Diner by name – for a fruit juice. Waits for Marshal to switch back to Max.

There's that subtle change and his fingers go still, then reach for his coffee.

“There is still no trace of Tatter,” Pretty says. “And now Aqua and Akimoto have disappeared too.” Scratch, scratch, transferring the data on their last Contract to Max.

Max frowns. Metas don't really have friendships but he is fond of the pair. And the disappearance of Tatter is eerie. Of course it makes him think of the time he tried Plex... “You want Marshal to start a hunt?”

Pretty accepts the juice from Kelly with a smile that disappears when he looks back at Max. “No more fucking around. I want Mick and Trump to get into The White Room and try and find some answers.”

Max gulps.


Crisis In Infinite Plexes - Second Wave


Wraith reined in her horse.

“Why are we stopping?” Mags asked.

Some townsfolk had begun gathering at windows and doorways.

“And what's your plan?” Wraith asked her with a sneer. Marshal Wednesday Wraith was far from your typical lawbringer but she still didn't care much for bounty hunters. It was a matter of discipline, of dedication. But if Sugarcube had been friends with this one, well that counted for something.

Mags returned the look. “We ride straight on to Logollos ranch and settle up.”

Callan was studying the onlookers, trying to get a read... Were they nervous or relieved at the appearance of the ragtag posse? “I'm all for taking risks, but...” he said.

“But there's something more going on here,” Darius finished. The accounts of the duel that had lured Sugarcube's former companions to Omega Canyon, passed on by postal riders, cowboys and travelling salesmen, had all hinted at darker goings-on than a simple showdown.

“It'll take learning the truth to make this justice and not just vengeance,” Dexter said.

Mags shrugged, as if the latter was good enough for her. But she followed the group as they made for The Hanged Man Saloon.


The Dragon suddenly lurched, the lights on the bridge flickered. The Captain steadied herself and looked to her First Officer.

“Recommend attack posture,” Comm. Washington said, his tone grim.

“Lokk?” she asked, one last time, looking for an excuse. The Lieutenant was furiously studying the transmissions from the unknown vessel, trying to interpret them, to decode them, to find any hint that they were an attempt to communicate and not a sign of aggression. With every pulse, though, their ship was taking damage.

“Chief Angellus, configure power distribution for combat mode. Commander, begin backing us off, slow and steady, with evasive manoeuvres in queue.”

Lt. Cube's voice broke in over the speakers. “Captain, the Legacy ship just one-eightied. Full-speed in the opposite direction. I'd like to take credit but we were only teasing them with target-locks.”

Magenta frowned. “Give me a full-radius Metawave scan.” It would mean diverting computing power from analyzing the mysterious pulses but Lokk obeyed the order without hesitation. His eyes widened as his screen registered the sensor sweep – the target vessel, Cube's Hangman, Wraith's Reaper, the retreating Judgement-class ship... and an approaching fleet of Ether-type Exo battlecruisers.

Before he could relay the result his peripheral screens flickered with new data. Another incoming transmission from the vessel, three-times the intensity of the last one.


The Eye had eventually crashed but they had survived. The plan had worked. They crawled from the Gutter, out past Frontline, deep in the Wasteland, and saw the Demon portal.

The sky bright with falling stars. Toxic fumes swirling like dervishes. The earth itself heaving and crashing like the sea against cliffs. Orbs of green and yellow flame flickering then erupting.

At the centre of the frothing tumult, a hole of pure white, like a circular section of a painting had been scraped clean to reveal the canvas beneath.

Darius shouted over the howling, screaming winds. "Max, I'm having more of those visions! For a second we were all together again but we were superheroes! Could we be shifting again?"

Max stared at the chaos before them. There weren't any Demons, they had all marched to Haven. "I don't think so... Maybe it's a time distortion? Maybe the proximity to the portal is letting you see glimpses of our future?" He looked back to his friend, smiling. "Aw hell Darius, you know I don't really know what's going on most of the time! I just guess and try to sound clever!"

Darius smiled back. Wraith stepped between them; she was holding a jury-rigged device that they had salvaged from the Grid when they first hijacked the Eye. Wraith had been convinced that she could use it to send a signal to Haven, to let them know that the Dragons fought on, but so far she had been unsuccessful.

"Did you get it working?" Darius asked.

"I... I don't know," Wraith said. "It suddenly started receiving a transmission."


Now Aqua's headphones began making a strange scratching sound. Akimoto's voice getting lost in static, then a high-pitched whine. She took them off. Looked back and forth in the empty subway car.

Sometimes their car was attached to others, sometimes you could see other people in the attached cars, sometimes the windows were blurry. And sometimes, like now, there was only darkness outside the windows. Until they reached a station. Aqua hoped they reached one soon, she had to pee.

Maybe Max or Akimoto or Suki, or one of the others would be at the next station. It worked like that sometimes. She was wishing right now that she paid more attention to how things worked, but it was all pretty confusing, and she was young, and mostly she just liked the action and adventure of it all.

The door to the conductor's booth opened and Bishop's body slumped out onto the floor.


Crisis In Infinite Plexes - First Echo


Maighread swung the sword in an arc that severed the hand of the first Ashen soldier and disarmed the second. Neither opponent stopped – the enchantments of their warlock masters were channeling their suffering into increased strength – and neither did Maighread, dropping into a crouch as the first threw a roundhouse kick, blood spraying out behind them from the stump, and the second smoothly drew a knife. Maighread tucked into a roll, trying to put some distance, but the soldiers pressed and Maighread straightened up but off-balance... 

Except it was all theatre, all a lure to move the Ashen soldiers into range of the Lady Dread's bow. As they lunged at Maighread arrows appeared in each of their necks. High in the trees above, the Fae Leafdancer silently skipped from one branch to another, looking for more targets.

Maighread returned to the temple where the Godhammer and the Faded Knight were dispatching the Living Statue that had awoken when the Dragons had tried entering. Freeman had warned them that his Scrye had revealed the presence of powerful arcane energies, but it was unclear what their nature was...

“Was that it?” Maighread asked the wizard, gesturing at the pile of rubble and dust at Hammer and Fade's feet.

Freeman shook his head. “There is still something inside... I've never felt anything like it...”

With a shared look the adventurers agreed to brave the ruins. From her perch in the trees, Dread watched her companions disappear inside. Some moments later she saw two more of the Ashen Tradition nearing the site but two more perfectly placed arrows put an end to them. She knew that there were many more still searching the woods – likely following the same tracks that had led the Dragons here - and it was only a matter of time before they discovered the Spider Temple as well. 

Suddenly Maighread stumbled from the entrance; she looked wounded. Dread was about to jump down to her, but Maighread raised her hands to her mouth and mimicked the cawing of a crow, a bardic technique taught to them by Maximus. A warning message... Three sharp caws then a fourth.

She was telling The Lady Dread to flee.


Crisis In Infinite Plexes - Anomaly One


Magnus swung the sword in an arc that severed the hand of the first guard and the gun barrel of the second. Neither opponent stopped – their brainwashing was routing all the pain stimuli through carefully crafted subliminal pathways that actually amplified their reflexes – and neither did Magnus, dropping into a crouch as the first threw a roundhouse kick, blood spraying out behind them from the stump, and the second smoothly exchanged the ruined firearm for a knife. Magnus tucked into a roll, trying to put some distance, but the guards pressed and Magnus straightened up but off-balance...

Except it was all theatre, all a lure to move the guards into the sight-lines of Francine's sniper rifle. As they lunged at Magnus their heads exploded. On the roof of the apartment building two blocks away, Francine began disassembling the weapon. Moving to the second perch to cover exfil.

Magnus was already inside the warehouse, after dropping one of the Professor's counter-security blankets. The presence of the two modified guards confirmed that this was an Omega site, so the first part of Trump's tip was true. Now, about the second...

Back in the van, pictures from Magnus' phone began appearing on the screen of Goner's laptop. She fiddled with some software to enhance the images. Tapped her earbud. “We got it, Mag. Head on back.”

“I have overwatch,” Francine's voice came in on the channel.

“Copy that,” Magnus' voice followed.

Angst was in the driver's seat. “So?” he asked, rubbing his hands together – it was a cold night.

“Just forwarded it to Mackenzie,” Goner said. “It's weird looking, whatever it is...”

Goner's phone buzzed. Then Angst's. Francine's, on the roof of the adjacent factory. Magnus' as he retrieved the blanket-emitter and slipped outside past the corpses.

A text from Mackenzie. 



Crisis In Infinite Plexes - First Wave


“What is it?” Seraphim asked. She was typing some calculations into her tablet. 

The Shifter looked thoughtful. “Channel is transmitting some live media feeds to me from downtown. It's starting.” 

The Tower stood up from the table. His head almost brushed the ceiling of the hidden bunker under the old factory. “Alright team. Remember, this won't be like the regular street gangs, corporate criminals or mad scientists we've tangled with before. The Alliance of Terrorists, Tyrants and Contract Killers is a threat unlike Plex City has ever seen.” 

The Silhouette nodded. “Time to counter-attack A.T.T.A.C.K.” 

“We need a cool name like that,” The Heretic chuckled. 

“The batteries on the Holo-copter are charged and ready,” Seraphim said. 

Shifter began focusing on the images of the city that Channel was sending him. “I'll port to the scene and start recon.” And with a crackle of autonic energy he was gone. 


Maighread had followed the strange tracks to the ruins of a Spider Temple. The Order of the Spider were famous for laying clever traps, and even though they had fallen years ago to the Children of the Pyre, it was possible that their lethal snares remained. Freeman crouched and conjured a Scrying Eye to search out the way ahead for any hidden dangers. The Faded Knight stood watch while the mage was in trance. 

“Let's just charge in,” Hammer said impatiently. “We don't want to let this thing get away again.”

Maighread didn't entirely disagree with the Changeling – this was the third time they had come across the mysterious markings and each time the maker had eluded them. If some new creature was prowling the realm then they needed to learn its nature quickly; if it be foul then to stop it from causing harm, or if it be fair then to protect it. 

“There is something strange...” Freeman whispered, his eyes closed, seeing through the Scrye into the shadows of the ruins. 

The Lady Dread suddenly dropped nimbly down from the trees. “A patrol of the Ashen Tradition approach from the ravine!” 

Hammer grinned and hoisted her enchanted mallet. 


“Modulating the emitters... There it is! I have the signal, Captain,” Lt. Lokk said from his station on the bridge. 

Capt. Magenta stood up from her chair. “Set an intercept course, Commander Washington. Chief Angellus, we'll need full-speed-plus if we're going to beat that Legacy vessel to the prize.”

Lt. Angellus nodded and began tapping and gesturing on the haptic display at the Engineering station, trying to maximize the synchronization of the Plexdrive with the local quantum-gravity conditions to squeeze out whatever extra power that he could. 

“Course set,” Comm. Washington said, studying vector simulations on his display. “But it's going to be close.” 

Two days ago, Lokk's routine Metawave scans intercepted a Pyro-type Exo probe registering an unknown vessel appearing near the border of a nearby Ether-type Exo territory. Anomalies like this attracted attention, especially Legacy attention, and the crew of The Dragon wasn't about to let them get the first look at it. 

Lt. Cube's voice came in over the comm from the hangar bay. “Send us out, Cap. I'll buy us some time.” 

The crew awaited Captain Magenta's order. 

“You in a Hangman, plus Lt. Comm. Wraith and Ensign Bisaillon in a Reaper. Don't get killed.”


Angst sprawled on the bed. Kicked off her shoes. They landed on the floor beside the bag from the convenience store. “I made sure to get you some milk duds,” she said, yawning. “Do you still like milk duds?” 

Frank and Goner were checking out an old local supply cache, to see if it was still intact. Max was meditating in the bathtub. Suki was peering out the motel window. 

Angst stretched. “What are we up to? Fourteen? I'm losing count, I can't remember what's been happening, what changed. After seven years of nothing...” 

Suki glanced at the revolver in her hand. She kept hoping each shift would bring back the Godhammer. Maybe some things were lost forever. She thought that she had been, but... “Maybe we should go shopping tomorrow, see if we can find you a cheerleader outfit.” 

Angst looked thoughtful. “Hm. I don't know. I don't know if that's me anymore.” 

“Is shooting things still you?” Suki asked. 

Angst sat up. “Why?” 

“Because more of those weird-eyed motherfuckers just showed up in the parking lot.”


Gauntlet leaned the shotgun beside the door, within easy reach. Peered through the peephole. Opened the door and let in Viking. 

“How do you know where my apartment is?” she asked. Then she noticed the blood dripping from his nose, staining his beard red. “What the - ?” 

“I saw it, saw everything, is what it felt like...” Viking muttered as he stumbled to her couch. “I ran an invocation of all three of the Trimurti, dosed on Type 1 Mana...” 

Gauntlet helped him sit. “You asshole! We had decided to wait!” 

“You know we couldn't, Peyton...” 

“How do you know that name?” 

“Mirk is getting too close, Cube isn't coming back... I had to try something.” 

“You tipped our hand, V. He'll know.” She moved to the window, glanced out. “I hope you got some useful intel at least.” Three black SUVs, an MK-Omega cleaner squad. She headed back to the door for the shotgun. 

Viking pushed himself back to his feet. Took a deep breath. Held out a flash-drive. “There's an audio file, I tried recording everything that came through the divination. I'll buy you some time. You need to get to the nearest subway station.” 


Aqua woke up. The rattle and hum of the subway must have lulled her to sleep. Her headphones were still on, but instead of music playing it was the sound of Akimoto's voice. He was rambling about all sorts of things, the kinds of things that he and Max would sometimes talk about. 

She looked down the car to where the barbarian-poet used to sit and meditate. Then she glanced back to where Max used to sit and read. The car was empty. It felt like she had been alone here for a long time. The door to Bishop's booth was closed. It felt like there hadn't been a stop in a long time.


Instability - Prelude to Crisis

Max picked up the cellphone as soon as he heard 'Gotta Get The Job Done' by The Plastik Kyngdom. It was his ring tone for messages, alerting him that something was up. A series of long numbers appeared: 

Lat: 38.990156264858015
Long: -94.61059659719467
Temporal Instability: 88.89% 
Liable Crunch: 98.02%
3 Days and Counting. 

"Sweet Mother of all things ..." he muttered as he slid his phone across the table and showed the screen to Maggie. "We need to get there in a hurry."

"That's pretty damn high," Maggie replied. "The Professor sure about this?"

"As sure as toast landing on the buttered side once it's been dropped," he replied. He dialed #333 on his phone and sent it. It was the call sign for the team to gather pronto.

Whatever was going to happen in 3 Days was going to be big.


+ PLEX TOURS .8 The Cast

Max Cube: test subject, metaphysical mystery

Maggie Magenta: haunted warrior, guardian angel

Morganfokker: mad scientist, dreamweaver

The Professor: scholar, guide, seer

Control: the director of operations, the voice of fate

The Dragons


Dexter: v.MaverickCop, v.Minus, v.Fallen, v.Super, v.Space, v.Western, v.Little, v.Upgrade

Wraith: v.Ninja, v.Minus, v.Fallen, v.Super, v.Space, v.Western, v.Little, v.Upgrade

Callan: v.MysticWarrior, v.Minus, v.Fallen, v.Super, v.Space, v.Western, v.Little, v.Upgrade

Darius: v.StreetKid, v.DeviantAngel, v.Fallen, v.Super, v.Space, v.Western, v.Little, v.Upgrade


Frank: v.Hitman, v.Minus, v.Reunion, v.Genderbent, v.Dungeons&, v.Thespian, v.Little, v.Upgrade

Angst: v.Cheerleader, v.Minus, v.Reunion, v.Genderbent, v.Dungeons&, v.Thespian, v.Little, v.Upgrade

Goner: v.Mercenary, v.Channel, v.Minus, v.Reunion, v.Genderbent, v.Dungeons&, v.Thespian, v.Little, v.Upgrade

Suki: v.SchoolKid, v.GrownUp, v.Minus, v.Reunion, v.Genderbent, v.Dungeons&, v.Thespian, v.Little, v.Upgrade


Aqua: v.KungFuClubKid, v.Minus, v.Cadre, v.Cyber, v.Thespian, v.Little, v.Upgrade

Akimoto: v.TimeDisplacedBarbarianPoet, v.Minus, v.Cadre, v.Cyber, v.Thespian, v.Little, v.Upgrade


Mayganne: v.Church, v.Escapist, v.Channel, v.Minus, v.Upgrade

Donnelly: v.Priest, v.Principal, v.Minus, v.Upgrade

Riveta: v.Detective, v.Seeker, v.Minus, v.Upgrade

Stone: v.Detective, v.ConspiracyTheorist, v.Minus, v.Upgrade

Scorpio: v.Legacy, v.LARP, v.Minus, v.Upgrade


The Guard: Serisia, Chem Finder, Vlad, Kitty, Rand, Drake, Stryker, Dakk & Bekki, Severin

Allies and Anomalies

Pretty George: finder and fixer

Trump: talking cat

Bishop: the conductor

Simon: secret agent, Max's shadow

Marshal: quester, Max's secret identity

Mick: the writer, Max's nemesis

Tatterdemalion: strange girl from another planet

Alice: psychic waitress, Angst's daughter

Susanna: comfort, beacon

Hank: not everyone survives initiation

Twofeathers: shape-shifting imp, Darius' ally

Crow: initiation spirit


Danny Leung, Jex, Raven, Penelope, Natasha, Connor, Memphis, Precious, Amber, Summer, Miranda, Gabriel 7


LEGACY, Logollos, demons, mercenaries, monsters, Brogan, MK-Omega, criminals, paramilitary forces, MJ-13, Lucy Morningstar, The Beast, cyborgs, dictators, Purgatides, conspiracies, The Future, cults, aliens, Acers, Lanight, spies, gangsters, Throckmorton, Morbid, slavers, corporations, The Legend Gangs, terrorists, Jak, Jakk, Bolo, pirates, Meelos&Legos, undead, Nell&Ally, Angus Mode, assassins, Verdi, Weldwood Que, Mortif, The They, Anti-Max, 'Fingers In A Glass Of Water', Mr. Clean, Exos, The Ashen Tradition, the Children of the Pyre, the Red Cadre, The Ul'ran, The Infrared and Ultraviolet Lodges, The System/Counter-System















> And for more version.Little check out The Metaplex Mall Incident in Issue 23 of Protodimension.



"Well, space usually has three dimensions. And we tend to move about within them relatively easily. Time has seven more dimensions, three of which we are usually travelling through without really noticing. And the other four require specialized technology. Psychic or mechanical, of course," Crow said.

"Okay, so that's ten dimensions so far..." Trump said.

"Right, plus the micro-dimension of biology, the hyper-dimension of neurology, the macro-dimension of planetary awareness, the mega-dimension of galactic awareness, and the ultra-dimension of cosmic consciousness."


"Multiplied by the 333 dimensions of mythic experience, and multiplied again by the 777 parallel universes, all to the power of 999 - the exponential number of interfaces that are commonly referred to as 'imagination'..."

"Um, I think I need to grab a calculator..."

"Don't bother, the exact number isn't necessarily relevant. Although the Professor would, of course, argue otherwise. And I don't pretend to know what kind of math his Plexotron operates on, only that what he thinks is his great invention is in fact a manifestation of the archetypal Initiation Chamber."

"Ah, that's interesting," Trump purred.

"Not to stray from the point, however. Which is that due to his XXXXXXXXXXXXX Max has the ability to travel through space, time, the body, the mind, the planet, the galaxy, the cosmos, mythology, parallel realities, media, dreams, and art."

"Which, in turn, might explain why he seems so confused a lot of the time."

"And keep in mind that this very description of Max as an Omni-dimensional Traveller is only one version of plureality."

Trump pawed at his whiskers. "You know what? I'm sorry I asked."

"Actually, I have a chart here somewhere that-" Crow continued.

"I need a nap."


> Chance in Plureality 6

January 12th, ????

I'm leaving this floating in the stream. I still don't understand it, but I've come to feel its pull from time to time. The Angel and the Demon tried their best to explain it, but it's never fully taken hold.

I've kept moving like they suggested, never stayed in one place too long, never made waves; just observed them.

I can't count the number of places I've been in, nor the number of 'instances' I've participated in... I usually know when a jump is coming though. It's like a tremor, you could be doing anything, then you notice it. Things just seem off, or far too clear. Police describe the adrenaline rush they get as heightening sounds or sensations, things are louder, clearer... More focused. It's a shame I've never been able to adapt to it and use it like I feel I should be able to. I just get lost in it, fall into the life I've taken on during that instance... Try to cling to it, like it'll make a difference this time around...

I've made my way by assuming lives. Easiest way to start, gather up some money... Starting from the bottom in some instances, beg, borrow, steal... Get some bankroll. After that, hit up a storage auction. You'd be surprised what kind of a start you can get from that... Little bits of a person or a family, all conveniently stowed awaiting retrieval. You can use that, set yourself up, assume a life. 

I know I'm supposed to observe, and wait... For what I still don't know, but I see them sometimes, during those tense moments. The kid and the girl with feathers in her hair. Often the man with the amusing or ironic t-shirts is there. Sometimes others... Recurring characters in a story I'm not allowed to know, but I play a part in apparently nonetheless.
I'm writing this now because I don't want to do this anymore.... I'm tired... I wish I'd never taken the time to listen to those two. Maybe I'd still be bouncing from cube to cube, making my ends meet, instead of digging through other peoples forgotten life fragments, trying to make some facsimile of a life. 

I want the meaning I was promised by those two that day over breakfast... I'll even take part of that meaning... Something will be better than nothing... And yet... I still gets that feeling... Like the other night in that noodle shop. 

There was a car accident outside, I'd swear that happened in slow motion... A white car narrowly avoided the wreck... It sped off into the night, leaving one of its passengers behind. I'd never met him, but he had that feeling about him, as I watched from the sidelines as I usually do. I knew this man somehow. He walked in the same stream as we do, and if you're reading this you know what stream I mean. 

While onlookers swarmed the car crash, the suited man from the car stood staring down the street, all but unnoticed by the onlookers. He had a worn out look to him... He looked like I feel. Tired... Worn out... Just done. 

Another man came out of the crowd then, also seemingly unnoticed by any of the onlookers. He walked with him and led him to a bench, where they sat down. It was then the scene enveloped me as they usually do... I could hear the sizzling of the kitchen behind me... The rustling of the man across from me as he turned to look at the chaos taking place in the streets, the overhead fans thrummed in tune to the footsteps of the people crowding the accident outside.

The two suited figures on the bench talked, the scruffy and worn man in his dirty suit and pristine crucifix; His head slowly leaning to one side. The old man in blue beside him, shaking his hands at him in an almost chiding manner, leaning on a cane, as if to reiterate a point already discussed. Still, no one but I seemed to notice them.

This carried on for some time, until the police showed up outside. A recurring character, the large detective among them this time for some reason. It was then the man in the blue suit took notice, of the detective I assume... When he placed his hand on his listeners shoulder and patted it. It felt like goodbye from where I was seeing it.

A man rose from the noodle counter inside with me and headed out to street. I'd seen him before... I'd recognize him every time, the angel mentioned him a lot, made a point of it even, he wore a black t-shirt this time with a large yellow infinity symbol on it. He rushed out to the nearby bench to the suited man's side, whom now alone raised his head to look at him with a smile. Then he closed his eyes and let his head sink into his chest. 

The normal merge feeling I get turned to nausea then, and I felt like I couldn't breath... I knocked over my noodles when I ran to the bathroom, and once I hit the door I shifted... I'm leaving this letter on the typewriter I found amongst the clutter in the old shop I ended up in...

If you're riding the same stream... Please... I'm done... I want to go back to how it was... Before the man on the bench... Before that morning in the diner... Hell. I'll take getting fired, I'll even take getting creamed by that white Buick that morning instead of missing it. Just let this all make some sense...

Signed... KEANE.



Control says, "Current analysis of the newest Iteration of the Metaplex suggests that there are increased levels of Continuity occurring between events... That there are higher amounts of cause and effect... That things are starting to connect, to make more sense... Whether this is helpful or harmful to Max remains to be seen." 

The Professor says, “Don't pretend that this isn't all part of your design. Whatever your intentions, I have to believe that by achieving Continuity Max will finally have some peace...” 

Morganfokker says, “Continuity is the greatest of all lies, and the greatest of all traps.” 

Maggie says, “Maybe it means something finally coming true, for better or worse.” 

Max says, “I barely remember it now, being in the mansion, fighting that monstrous cyborg, and hoping that maybe it would be the thing... I was hallucinating messages from a television producer, or maybe the cyborg was the hallucination... I believed that if things worked out we would get picked up, if we were a TV series, or get to stay together if we were a team of supernatural warriors... I kissed a girl – was it Maggie? I hoped that the romance would make it count more, mean more. I wanted it all to mean something. To matter. I wanted Continuity more than anything. Now, sometimes, it scares me... I can't make up my mind.”