Continuing Rey's Story...

Next piece. Lock. Turn. Lock.

Alex didn't want to make It.

Next piece. Lock. Turn. Lock.

Alex had been putting It together for too long and It was now starting to become a burden.

Twist. Flip. Lock.

It constantly weighed on the mind, pulling, begging, asking to fulfill Its purpose. It wanted to start.

Next piece. Lock. Turn. Lock.

“You've been at this for hours. Is that all you're going to do?"

He didn't answer her. Every day it had been the same question. Day after day. Hour after hour. For all he knew, year after year.

“That's supposed to be a fun thing. Do you understand what fun is?"

Alex continued to ignore her as he forced a piece. It didn't quite fit, but it almost did. He leaned in and squinted, silently cursing his failing eyes. A lifetime ago he'd been a ball player, a damned good one, but when he found himself cringing in the outfield, it was the first hint that he needed glasses. How old was he then? 40? Younger? That didn't matter now. He had to finish It.

“You know, there are other things to be doing around the house."

Her voice continued to haunt him, though his hearing was less reliable than his vision. She didn't understand. It had to be finished, completed and packed away with all the others, before their company arrived. If he waited for her, nothing would get done. The terrible thing taking shape before him had been a gift to them both, but he had no patience. With or without her help, he was going to get this thing done.

The lights dimmed and flickered. A younger man might not have been fazed, but one of the pieces wriggled and slipped from his grasp in a moment of distraction.

“You lost another one, didn't you? You're on your own; some of us have more important things to do."

He scrambled around on the polished floor, desperate. Completing It, the overall obsession, now paled before the focus of that One Crucial Piece. It nipped at his fingertips in the shadows, but he still had some grip left in his digits. In triumph, he seized it, pulling himself to his feet and finding a home for the wayward part.

Lock. Turn. Lock.

“You see!" Alex cried to the woman's voice, to the words of his past. She had only so much patience herself. At some point, she had simply left. Minutes ago. Hours. Days. Years? He ignored her when she had been there, and continued hearing her long after she was gone. Alex didn't want to make It, but Alex had to make It, no matter the cost.

“He's still at it?" asked one of the three men on the other side of the glass. “How many times now? How many times has he made the exact same choices?"

“Every time." It said from the shadows, in that horrible voice like gears grinding on a harpsichord, “Our numbers now outnumber yours. This stops when he stops, and when he stops, you know what that means."

* * * * *

What does it mean? Maybe you can answer that on your blog, continue the collaborative tale, and post a comment over at Rey's to let him know you’ve added a piece to this puzzle. I can't wait to find out where this is going...


Blogger Rey said...

Nice paragraph. LOL!

10/20/2006 9:06 AM  
Blogger Otis said...

This looks too hard now.

10/20/2006 4:19 PM  

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