📚 › Cackletown

A town going upside down, reality shook by strange cackling, and a woman with a strange power to unwittingly reshape reality, creating chaos and personality shifts all around. Can the Surge Team keep up with this impossible situation?

Strange cackling occurrences rip through the fabric of realities, and seem to impact every story characters.
Story refugees appear and disappear unexpectedly, and the ones that are here to stay must be given new identities, roles and purposes.
After much confusion, Ed Steam manages to track the source of it all to a not so innocent Bea, whose self-realization and disappearing ego has launched the whole Universe on a nonsensical spin.

Could Ed and other unexpected allies bring back the balance to the verse?

So the Story goes...

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  • “How did you know about the rat?” Bea leaned surreptitiously, having overheard the conversation in some way.
    “Oh, I don’t know, I guess Irina told me,… or was it Aqua Luna?”

    Al’s gone too far this time, TinaBecky said, perusing the latest installment of the Reality Play. “He’s just adding old characters willy nilly now!”

    Tina just looked at Becky for a moment before replying quietly, “Isn’t that the point?”

    Gripping Tina’s shoulder firmly and giving her a little shake, Becky continued, “It’s getting serious, Tina, can’t you see the danger we’re in? Fictional characters are coming to life all over the planet, demanding birth certificates and passports and refugee status. Insisting on continuation, more detailed back stories; some are even demanding therapy for what the authors have put them through!”

    Tina looked shocked. “Is it really as serious as that?” she asked. “I had heard about it, but, well, I didn’t like to think too much about it…” her voice trailed off, hoping that Becky would drop the subject so she didn’t have to think about it any more.

    “It’s the Imagination Wave, Tina. We’ve never really understood Imagination or how to use it. During this wave, we’re going to find out, and it’s going to be messy, believe me! It’s not just the characters we’ve made up, it’s the land mass. Characters are looking for their lands, demanding compensation for missing islands…”

    “What are we going to do?” Tina whispered dramatically. “We’ve been churning out characters and littering changed landscapes with them and then just leaving them stranded, for nine years!”

    “And we can’t even get away from them all if we flew to Mars, either,” added Al, who had been eavesdropping from behind the door. He joined them and pulled up a chair. “Seriously, girls, we need a plan. This is our most important mission of all.”

    “Should we kill them all off?” asked Becky, wincing as she said it. “I didn’t mean that!” she added hastily.

    “Oh, you don’t want to do that!” Al replied quickly. “Some authors have done that and have been haunted by dead characters something awful! Dead characters are a worse nightmare than characters coming to life, believe me!”

    “Well I didn’t really mean it,” Becky said sheepishly.

    “Let’s ask Sam,” said Tina.

    Fanella had been secretly watching Gustave at the bar with his entourage of old slappers, hiding herself behind a potted palm. She was biding her time, and building up her courage for a confrontation with a stiff martini, when the door opened and a crowd of handsome Russian men walked into the bar.

    “Oh my god, Tina!” Becky shouted in alarm when she read the latest entry. “Not only do we have characters to worry about, the bloody characters have been creating rafts of refugee characters of their own! Where will it all end?”

    “It will never end, Becky,” Tina replied in a serious quiet voice. “It will just circle back, again and again.”

    “Well, at least this lot are all handsome,” Al interjected, with a mischievous grin.

    “Now, shouldn’t we get back to the play now, and stop interjecting.” Al mentioned.
    Otherwise, I’ll soon start sounding like a loitering eavesdropper character.
    He pointed out to Tina “you’re right, she’s gone crazier with age…”

    “She has. I think we need some rules,” said Tina in a cheerful, albeit rather raucous, voice.


      Blecky pointed at the chat log “here, I thought Tilna sounded baldish, rather than raucous, wouldn’t that be more hilarious?”
      Lal chuckled agreeably. “Tilna would surely appreciate the rudiness of this tartismug. I’d vote to change it.”
      “Slam, what do you think?”

      Al was toying with the thought of deleting that last comment. Too meta, he thought. A story within a story, another rabbit hole, while failing to address the theme. But what was the theme already?

      “Are you alright, Tina dear?” asked Becky kindly. First she sounded serious and quiet, the next moment seemingly on the verge of hysteria, what was the matter with her?

      “Rules won’t help much during the Imagination Wave, you know. This is all out chaos, I’m telling you! I didn’t want to think about it, but now that I am, I am wondering if all these displaced and irate characters are going to be following any rules? Hah!” she cackled wildly, more rattled herself than she was willing to admit.

      Flanella decided to give Glustave the slip. He was welcome to Blea and Clonsuela, she had her eye on Iglor and Bloris.

      “That’s your flucking flault, Lal” Becky said tartly.


        Sam was looking at the new breatharator that was just delivered. The big machine from purple, turned suddenly red and whizzed in like mad for a moment.

        “Well, I think the energy has become more focused, can’t you feel it?” he said absentmindedly, to nobody in particular.

        “It isn’t Lal’s fault,” said Tina succinctly.

        “Whose fault is it?” asked Becky quietly, subdued by Tina’s air of authoritative wisdom.

        Becky snorted, and then wiped the coffee off her keyboard.

        “Flocused flenergy, are you fluckling kiddling me?”


          “Tilna,” Blecky said quietly, momentarily stunned by Tilna’s superior attitude, “The leditor is always to blame, in the end.”


            Don’t you mean “aways to bame?” Lal pointed out, always quick to notice aerial typlos.

            F LoveF Love

              “Tilna needs a Leditor. She is rubbish at Ploof Leading,” said Blechy, snarkily.

              I wonder if these constitute even more new characters, Blecky wondered. I will keep that worrying thought to myself, she decided. On the plositive slide though, Blecky didn’t have a whole passel of slot nosed blats like poor Becky.

              “Quick Vincentius,” hissed Arona impatiently. “Ditch these slot nosed blats and follow me. I have the salubantum!”


                Slam lentered the loom with a blull letter. “Something arrived in the mail for you Blecky. It’s heavy. I think it’s a blue key.”

                “Glod help us all when Jacques Schitt and Frank Diddley Squat turn up”, Glodfrey remarked with a heartfelt sligh.

                After perusing the latest plot proposal he felt a strong need to know just how many characters were potentially on the move. His head swam with the ramifications, and he had a sinking feeling that there were far more characters than he could begin to imagine.
                So he started reading, inwardly screaming “don’t make me count!”. At first he’d only considered the earth bound more or less human characters.

                “Glod help us all,” he repeated, his eyed glazed with apprehension. “Who will we ever get to ploof lead all this now?

                “You deplessing old flart, Glodfrey, for leavens slake, it will be sluch flun!” Lilith said, giving him a playful plunch on the ell bough. “The arrival of The Time Travelling Absinthe Pirates might coincide with the government alien disclosure programme, what a hoot!”

                Flinnley plicked up Glodfrey’s head, that was still swilming with the ramifications in the cacklwarium, and plut it black florceflully on the man’s bloody blody.
                “Gloss” said Arona with a disglusted flace.
                “Thanks, Finnley. Godfrey, doln’t be so pleaslandish”, said Lelizabeth to Glodfrey, “there lare and will lalways be more lants in all the probable versions of Earth than there will be chlaracters in a stooly.” She tlook some tlime to appreciate what she had just said, finding it would sound good for the plosterity.


                  Bea decided that she needed to put herself back to sleep quickly. She had to wake up to a different external reality than loud cackles, lisps and pyramid-stealing rats with a bindle and attitude to boot.

                  She was glad there was some of her sleep inducing medication left. This time apparently, they looked like Chinese medicine, gooish and blue in colour, with pungent smell of dried sea cucumber mixed with dirty alloys of slit nosed bat’s snot.

                  Maybe the weird scenarios were a resurgence of the ego… She would have to meditate more on what these false egos and contrived characters appearances truly meant.


                    By doing so, she dreadedly realised she might have broken one or two rules.

                    She let the thought float and flow away, embellishing it with a flurry of hells to make it sound more like it came from Lalaland.

                    With that, she should be safe from retributions and impeding baldness.
                    “Well, better that than the horrible fate of toothlessness of that last Filna’s incarnation” she couldn’t help but think before slumbering away.


                      In the Void’s state, the Breathe of Story that was the source of the ten thousands characters took a pause, and convened with Itself to discuss the next course of events.

                      Soon enough, chatter started again, and It broke down the Formless Dream into a new Multitude of Itself.


                        First appeared the We, closely followed by the Others. In fact, so closely, they could hardly been called apart at the beginning.

                        Then awareness awoke again, oscillating for an instant between the We and Others. Which should be this time?
                        Discarded Forms awoke quickly to follow in the aperture of awareness, and opened their eyes to their memories, filled to the brim with old and new stories about themselves, about the world, its purported reason to be as it is, its rules and all the hows and whys that should once more be turned upside down.

                        The set was ready, its actors in place. There was no time to waste, for there really was no time at all.

                        “The key comes from a certain Dory”, said Becky with a puzzled look. “Does anyone know a Dory ? I don’t.”
                        “Have you been taking sleep pills again?” asked Tina in the brink of an eyeroll.
                        “Not at all”, said Becky briskly, bringing the letter and the key close to her chest. “I just don’t remember. It seems so far away.”
                        “It looks like a locker key, or maybe a safe key.” said Sam. “Look, there is a little monkey carved on it, and a number.” he said pointing at it.
                        Becky and Tina looked more closely.
                        “1495”, said Becky.
                        “Year 1495 (MCDXCV) was a common year starting on Thursday”, said Al. He was trying to solve a puzzle based on chaotic randomness theory and the evolution of the electromagnetic flux of sunspots in real time.
                        “There’s a little card with it.” Tina was holding a small square rigid paper with a name on it. “It’s written Tikfijikoo Island.”
                        “I remember the name”, said Sam, “I think it’s that place where they are building the Spider Amusement Park, or SAP.”

                      Viewing 25 replies - 26 through 50 (of 114 total)