8FOLD/HCC: Mighty Medley # 12, December 2014, by Messrs. Alambre, Brenton, Perron & Russell

Andrew Perron pwerdna at gmail.com
Wed Dec 3 20:02:05 PST 2014

On 12/2/2014 9:58 PM, Tom Russell wrote:
> This installment of monthly goodness has a sort of accidental theme
> for four of our five stories. See if you can suss it out.


> The esteemed Mr. Perron provided the correct solution.


> The quartet only performs heists when one of them is asleep
> (4), yet all four of them are present (1).

Ahhhhhh! Of course.

> It should be noted that our ninth clue is "The famous Monster
> Diamond was stolen Tuesday night by the Quartet", and *not* "Only the
> famous Monster Diamond was stolen"; i.e., the Monster Diamond was
> itself one-fourth of the heist.

Ah! I see. <3

>     But even if you grant me that, you might yet take issue with my
> phraseology, for I should have said something like "Silke, his boy,
> and his posse, except for the shape-changer Skin of Snake who was
> conspicuously absent, but Mr. Strife was with them", only more
> refined-like. And if that's your opinion, you're welcome to it, only
> you probably call a windhover a kestrel.


> Silke and Adams found a doctor, and hurried Hank to his table. They
> explained about Peake, and how the knife passed through Hank's
> invulnerable skin without ever touching it, and how it sliced up his
> innards while it was white-hot. The doctor gave Hank some whisky for
> the pain. Weren't much else he could do.
>     "Afraid I'm not long for this world, boys," said Hank.


>     Hank laughed; laughing hurt. "I don't want you to watch me die.
> Wasting time. Celine's out there, and she needs saving. Do me that
> kindness, will you? And tell her... hell, you know what to tell her, I
> guess."

;.; ;.; ;.;

>     "The future? No, I am much crueler than that." Thin hands pull down
> the hood, revealing not a face, but a horrifying mass of eyes, all
> rolling and piled together, balancing upon exposed larynx and spine.
> "I am the Ghost Of Christmas Possible. I visit an infinite number of
> potential truths. I reveal all a man's probably paths, everywhere his
> actions take him.

Ooooooo. Man, I should've done a Christmas one-- but then again, I see what 
the theme is, and I am pleased.

>     "Look and see," the ghost says. The fog parts, and we are in my
> home. Men are packing away my furniture. Paintings of my ancestors are
> being taken down. Rugs are rolled up and carried away. And I am there,
> slumped and defeated, signing so many papers.
>     "Look and see," the ghost says. The fog parts again, and we are
> outside my place of business. The windows shattered, the stone
> scarred, the timbers blackened. The building, long taken by a fire,
> and there I am, out front, with more than a thin cup and the charity
> of passersby.
>     "Look and see," the ghost says. The fog parts once more, and I see
> myself lying in small dark cell. Ice has formed on the stone walls.
> The watery soup has frozen in the plate. The thin blanket will not be
> enough for the chilly evening.


>     "Yes. Yes, of course there is time. I know of a man who will wake
> on Christmas morning, full of hope and new humour. A man who has
> witnessed parallel possibilities, who knows only a heart of warmth and
> cheer will keep him off those terrible paths. He will learn to be
> generous, and he will live a fuller life than he has ever known.
>     "But he is not you."
>     The cloak falls out of my hand. The ghost moves away, into the fog,
> and is gone.

Oh nooooooooooo

Seriously, the one-page format was *perfect* for this. <3

>     As the man ate he wondered - not for the first time - if the
> reduced levels of ambient magic would cause the ravening hordes of
> zombies in eastern Europe to become dormant.

That'd be nice. o.ov As always with Saxon's stuff, I love-love-*love* the 

> He really had no time to
> get bogged down in pointless fights - no matter how much he enjoyed the
> gunfights in the Zane Grey western novels.

See this issue!

> "Joan, don't react and get ready to defend yourself."
>     "What is it?" the angel asked, sotto voce.
>     "We aren't leaving any footprints."
>     Marcus silently cursed himself.  In his exhaustion he had forgotten
> about the air elementals that he had set about to erase his trail, and
> then when these two had walked close enough the elementals set about
> wiping their tracks as well.


> It's more that the day somehow snuck up on
> him while he was staring at it the whole time. One month from now,
> have to get her a present; three more weeks, need to get her a
> present; a week, how is it only a week, I really need to get her a
> present.


>     One night a few years back-- one of those long nights following an
> argument, where they talked in strained, quiet, aching whispers--
> Julie had said, "I know you but you don't know me. After all these
> years, it feels like you still don't know me. And sometimes I wonder
> if you ever will."

Awwwwwwww ;.;

>     But Julie knows him. Every day, she makes him tremendously,
> tap-dancingly happy. And every day, he gives her a new reason to
> wonder why she puts up with him. He was clumsy and embarrassing even
> before he got his powers. Since then (he "jokes"), he's stepped up his
> bungling game to a whole new level.


>     This year he really outdid himself. He started a war with an alien
> civilization (made them pariahs), got their super-team disbanded, lost
> their savings. And now he has to buy her a gift that says "I do love
> you and after ten years I do know who you are and I'm not just some
> big clumsy balloon-man sent here to bring you sadness and pain".


>     He knows what to get her then, but he also knows when to give it to
> her: there's dumb and then there's Dumb. Offering a divorce on their
> actual anniversary falls into the latter.


>     She sighs, a little sharply, and then starts to read it again. "You
> know, you're right," she says as she gets half-way down the page.
> "This has been a pretty bad year. And you have done some monumentally
> dumb things, on account of your chronic dumbness. But this? This is
> the dumbest thing you've ever done. In your entire life. In fact, I'm
> going to pretend that reincarnation is a real thing, just so that I
> can go on record saying this is the dumbest thing you've done in /any/
> of your lives. That's how dumb this is.


>     "The gas was supposed to make you invulnerable. Which it did. I
> wanted you to share my life, but I didn't want you to get hurt. It
> wasn't supposed to turn you into a joke. I didn't want to turn you
> into a joke."


>     "Being with you changed me," corrects Max. "Made me a better
> person. And a happier one. You've given me so much, changed me so
> much..."
>     "...and you've given me nothing in return? Oh, Max, you big moron."


>     "It does," she admits. "But you've made me a better person too.
> Probably. Kinda hard to improve on perfection. And happier, yes. And
> sadder, yes. Hey, it's better or worse, thick or thin. Some days
> you're just a little thicker than others. You gave me you. You're
> enough. Boy, are you enough." Hug.


Andrew "NO .SIG MAN" "Juan" Perron is no longer on the line, please leave your 
message at the beep

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