ZERO :: the Fool (annwyd) wrote,
ZERO :: the Fool
annwyd

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why I should not be allowed to RP after reading Lovecraft

ineffablegame is holding a bunch of contests lately. The latest one was the "Carrier Pigeon" challenge, where people compete to deliver packages swiftly and safely.

I entered Kakashi. And then I got an Idea.
---
The letter came to everyone who'd entered. A hastily scribed postcard depicting various locations around the game. Including places that quite technically no longer exist. And haven't existed in at least a century. It gave instructions to appear in a certain place in the Middleton neighborhood at a certain time. It also appeared in your mailbox. Regardless of whether or not you had a mailbox before, regardless of whether you have a home, you have a mailbox now.
Imagine that.
Carrier Pigeon's priest is a smartly dressed fellow in a "Die or deliver" black cap in an odd featureless black courier truck. It idles, despite having little exhaust, but the door is open now. Looks like the priest just got here. And he still looks a little nettled.
"Okay, we lost a couple of packages last time," he muses to the group after they collect. "I would demonstrate to you what would happen if you do this as well, but we are running slightly behind schedule. Long story short. Don't do it. +_+"
He'll step out of his truck and walk around back, opening it up again. "I'll explain so we can all get started. Each of these packages has two things on it--an address, hopefully in Middleton depending on what you get and a time. You get your package to that address by that time. Make _sure_ it goes to that address," he stresses this as if it is a familiar problem. "And for the god's sake, don't open it. If we can reach an accord on this, we can begin. Step up and get your packages."
---

Walking around a twist in a path in the outer Darkwood and discovering a bright red mailbox helpfully addressed to a 'Hatake K.' is definitely an atypical appearance for the aforementioned Kakashi. But he takes it well enough. Besides, it might be convenient to have a mailbox later on, even if it is randomly underneath a gnarled tree and next to a giant mushroom in the middle of a spooky forest.

Still, he certainly takes his time getting to the noted location in Middleton. The Priest is practically beginning his instruction speech by the time Kakashi saunters in. He's in time to hear the angry-eyed warning. "We appreciate your restraint," he says mildly as he wanders up to pick up his package. He makes as if to rattle it so that he can hear what's inside, but he avoids actually doing so. He's not stupid. Mostly.

Instead he just looks at the box, tips his head in acknowledgment to the Priest, then vanishes--quite literally vanishing, blurring away as he darts away down the streets.

For all his dramatic exit, though, he really...has no clue where he's supposed to go. He's spent some time learning the lay of the Dream (although admittedly more the Wild Dreaming and Promethea than the other cities), and '68 Dagon Lane' was not on any of the maps. And the name of the Middleton suburb that it's in is written in some strange script he's never seen before. It kind of creeps him out, to be honest. Oh, well, at least it's in the Middleton area.

Those were his thoughts upon first leaving the place where he picked up the package, at least. An hour later, he's not so sure about it being in Middleton at all, even though the address says it is. Perched on a tree at the far eastern edge of the city, he holds the box up and, although it makes him uncomfortable, examines the strange script indicating the suburb's name.

After a long moment, and even, perhaps, some nervous hesitation, he lifts his forehead protector and examines the script with his Sharingan on. Maybe it's then that he goes a little pale...well, paler than usual. He couldn't say why if you asked him, though.

In the end, though, looking at that script with his uncanny vision has given him a strong impression that he can't quite shake. He's pretty sure he can find where the package goes now--although it might take him a while longer to get there.

Eventually, though, he's found his way to the northernmost part of Middleton, and he walks among the farmland along the Aethra River that leads up to Astrae Lake. Unlike the new oceans that have risen all around the Gameboard, the lake is small, calm, and old.

Kakashi stands at its edge, the package in his hands, and looks dubiously down to where the water grows deep and still.
---
Kakashi is a ninja. For four fifths of his life, he's been fighting people, killing people, and dealing with people who were trying to kill him. So coming up with a quick jutsu to help him stay underwater long enough and then ducking into the lake should be nothing special to him. He should be able to do it just fine.

This is why it really surprises him that it takes a full half of an hour for him to wind up the courage to do so. He finds himself simply staying at the edge of the small lake, sometimes standing, sometimes kneeling, sometimes crouching, sometimes even turning and briefly pacing--but never actually going in. It's really quite strange. But there's just something in the glint of the dark water in this particular shadowed part of the lake--he can't shake the feeling that there are things down there that are too blasphemous and horrible even for the Dream. Some might even call them eldritch.

Finally, though, he makes his decision. He is, after all, a freaking ninja. He can handle a few dark horrors. He adjusts his jacket for a moment, then tucks his package snugly down there, nestled up against his undershirt. He pats it a few times to make sure it's secure. The jacket is pretty tough--it should keep the package not only safe but as dry as possible. As for himself...he crouches by the ledge leading off into the precipitous waters of Astrae Lake's deepest spot, and he goes through a quick series of handseals. It takes him a moment to remember them all--he rarely uses this jutsu. After a moment, something shimmers around him, encasing him in a small bubble of air--it should last long enough for him to get down and deliver his package. If all goes well, it'll even keep him from getting wet!

Of course, given the feeling of dread creeping over him despite his usual pragmatism, he suspects "going well" is not going to be on the agenda tonight. He is seized by the desire to ask thin air what could possibly go wrong--but at least he suppresses that. I mean, that'd just be asking for doom and destruction.

And thus he dives into the water, clutching the package securely beneath his jacket. And for a while, as he descends and checks the street numbers along the curiously well-preserved dwellings (the architecture of which, even more curiously, does not seem to follow any known rules of Euclidean geometry), nothing untoward happens.

Then he reaches 68 Dagon Lane. He rings the doorbell. It sounds less like a chime and more like the sickly shredding noise made by space itself tearing open to reveal untold terrors right beneath its surface. After a moment, the door opens.

It is hard to describe exactly what passes next, especially without endangering anyone's sanity. Suffice to say, there is a significant thrashing about deep beneath the surface of the innocent little lake. For a brief moment, even the surface roils with the unimaginable battle that occurs far below. And then...there is nothing but silence.

Several minutes later, Kakashi heaves himself up to the surface and grabs hold of a ledge, gasping for breath. He is now minus his package, but he seems to have kept his body and most of his sanity intact. His hitai-ate is still level across his forehead, leaving both eyes wide open and staring. Judging from his expression, he probably wishes he'd covered them both down there instead.

After a moment, he finally hauls himself out of the water and staggers to his feet. Unsurprisingly, he is soaking wet--he stretched his air-bubble jutsu rather past its limit there. A little more oddly, he is covered in a strange mix of his own blood and some mysterious ichor. The latter emanates an unholy stench.

Kakashi takes a moment to attempt to wipe himself down. Then he gives up. He'll have to take a shower--there's no way he's going back into this lake to wash up.

And so he walks away, still trailing a severed tentacle wrapped around one ankle.
Tags: ineffable game, roleplay
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