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2020.11.25 18:29 Shagrrotten New York Times - The 25 Greatest Actors of the 21st Century (So Far)

The 25 Greatest Actors of the 21st Century (So Far)
Chameleons or beauties, star turns or character roles these are the performers who have outshone all others on the big screen in the last 20 years.
By Manohla Dargis and A.O. Scott Nov. 25, 2020
We are in a golden age of acting — make that platinum — as we realized when we decided to select our favorite film performers of the past 20 years. There’s no formula for choosing the best (just squabbling), and this list is both necessarily subjective and possibly scandalous in its omissions. Some of these performers are new to the scene; others have been around for decades. In making our choices, we have focused on this century and looked beyond Hollywood. And while there are certainly stars in the mix and even a smattering of Oscar winners, there are also character actors and chameleons, action heroes and art-house darlings. They’re 25 reasons we still love movies, maybe more than ever.
25. Gael García Bernal
MANOHLA DARGIS When Alejandro González Iñárritu’s thriller “Amores Perros” and Alfonso Cuarón’s road movie “Y Tu Mamá También” were released in American art houses a year apart, the shocks were seismic. Their directors were soon racing toward international renown and so was Gael García Bernal, their shared star. He was gifted, held the screen and had a face you kept looking at, partly because — with his doe eyes and lantern jaw — it seamlessly fused ideals of feminine and masculine beauty.
This contrast wasn’t especially obvious in “Amores Perros” (2001), but it helps enrich the warmer “Y Tu Mamá También” (2002), a soulful coming-of-age story that opens with a whoop and ends on a sigh. García Bernal plays Julio, a working-class teenager on a journey of discovery (of the self, of others). Along with his best friend (played by Diego Luna), Julio tumbles through life heedlessly until he doesn’t. As the story’s raucousness quiets, Julio’s adolescent machismo fades, replaced by pensiveness that the actor makes so physical, you see the character retreating inside himself.
By 2004, García Bernal had appeared in Walter Salles’s “The Motorcycle Diaries” as the young Che Guevara and played a duplicitous chameleon in Pedro Almodóvar’s “Bad Education.” Almodóvar put the actor in heels to play a noirish femme fatale, a role that García Bernal apparently didn’t much like doing so but that deepened his persona with a smear of lipstick and a psychological coldness that created new shocks.
A. O. SCOTT In Pablo Larraín’s “No” (2013), García Bernal plays Rene Saavedra, a hotshot young advertising creative in 1980s Chile, with his usual charm. He’s cool but not intimidatingly so; good-looking in the same measure; funny but not to the point of obnoxiousness; self-confident but not a jerk. At first, it’s easy to underestimate both Rene and García Bernal, to mistake their casual, unassuming naturalness for a lack of gravitas or craft. Rene is enlisted by a group of opposition political parties to produce television spots supporting a “no” vote on a referendum extending the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. Rene’s job is to sell rejection as an upbeat choice, to acknowledge the brutality of Pinochet’s regime while focusing on the happy future without him. Though Rene believes in the cause, he also views it as a marketing challenge, and there is a bit of a “Mad Men” vibe to his wrangling with clients, colleagues and rivals.
It’s up to García Bernal to provide the dramatic link between the banalities of the media business and the terror of political repression, and he does it almost entirely with his eyes. One night, the apartment he shares with his young son is vandalized while they sleep, and in that moment Rene’s chipper resolve liquefies into pure fear. The next day he is back at work, and both he and the audience have a new and profound understanding of what the work means.
24. Sônia Braga
MANOHLA DARGIS I just recently rewatched “Aquarius” (2016) for our ode to Sônia Braga. For those who haven’t seen it: Braga stars as Clara, a writer whose apartment faces the Atlantic. Most of the story follows Clara just living her life while swatting away her landlord. Braga fits seamlessly into the director Kleber Mendonça Filho’s wonderful, unfussy realism. This time while viewing the movie, though — partly prompted by, ahem, a chapter title called “Clara’s Hair” — I noticed how Braga kept rearranging her opulent curtain of hair. And, as she swept it up and let it down, I realized that Mendonça wasn’t just presenting a character but also the legend playing her.
A. O. SCOTT It’s a reminder — subliminal and brazen at the same time — that Braga was a big deal in Brazil and beyond in the 1970s and ’80s, her nation’s answer to Sophia Loren. Her films with Mendonça (“Bacurau” this year as well “Aquarius”) draw on that history and exploit her old-school charisma. But they aren’t just late-career star turns. Clara isn’t Sonia Braga: She’s a highly specific woman with her own history of achievements, love affairs and regrets. But only a performer with Braga’s utter self-assurance, her heroic indifference to what anyone else thinks of her, could bring Clara to life.
DARGIS Yet what I found fascinating about “Aquarius” this time is that Clara is alsoBraga, in the sense that the character’s meaning is partly shaped by everything that Braga brings whenever she’s onscreen, including her history in Brazilian cinema as a woman of mixed ancestry as well as her adventures in Hollywood. There’s something fantastically liberating watching Braga play this majestic woman, who has visible wrinkles and never had breast reconstruction after her mastectomy. That’s especially true given how Braga was once slavered over as a sex star. “There is nothing else to call her,” a male critic once wrote — well, you could call her an actress.
SCOTT Her skill manifests itself in a totally different way in “Bacurau” this year, a crazily fantastical (and violent) science-fictionish allegory of Brazil in crisis that departs from the realism of Mendonça’s other films without abandoning their political passion or their humanism. Braga, part of a sprawling ensemble that includes nonprofessional actors, is essential to this. She plays Domingas, a small-town doctor with a drinking problem and a sometimes abrasive personality — a deglamorized, comical role that no one else could have managed with such depth and grace. Or as Mendonça put it, “In a symphony, she’d be the piano.”
23. Mahershala Ali
A. O. SCOTT Mahershala Ali has one of the great faces in modern movies — those sculpted cheekbones, that high, contemplative brow, those eyes tinged with melancholy. His presence on camera is magnetic, but also watchful and sly. His characters tend toward reticence, guardedness, but their reserve is its own form of eloquence, their whispers more resonant than any shout.
Ali has won two Oscars for best supporting actor. The first was for “Moonlight” (2016), in which he quietly demolished a durable Hollywood stereotype. Juan is a drug dealer, a figure of community destruction and implicit violence. What defines him, though, is his gentleness, the unconditional kindness he bestows on Chiron, the young protagonist. Juan listens to the boy; he answers his questions; in one of the film’s most moving scenes, he teaches him to swim.
And then, between the first and second acts, he vanishes. But Ali haunts the film even after his departure. He’s both its tragic, nurturing image of manhood and the first man worthy of Chiron’s love.
MANOHLA DARGIS Ali first got my attention in the Netflix series “House of Cards.” He played Remy Danton, a Washington lawyer whose knowing little smile could flicker like a warning, signaling the danger in his world. Remy entered in the second episode in a scene at a restaurant, where the lead character, Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey), is eating with two other power brokers. Remy doesn’t stand over the seated men, he looms. You know Underwood is bad news, but when the director David Fincher cuts to Remy’s face, Ali abruptly changes the temperature by dropping his affable facade for skin-prickling wariness, making it clear that he isn’t talking to a man but to a predator.
I was so accustomed to seeing Ali in a bespoke suit (and sometimes out) that I didn’t recognize him at first in “Moonlight.” It wasn’t simply the different wardrobes, but the precise bearing that Ali gave each man, variations in bodies, yes, but also in how those bodies move and signify. In “House of Cards,” Remy flows and there were moments when I thought I was looking at the next James Bond. In “Moonlight,” Ali creates a titanic character whose force, even after he disappears from the movie, continues to resonate. The actor creates a very dissimilar character in “Green Book” (2018, his second Oscar winner), this time with a performance — as the musician Don Shirley, whom Ali plays as a man and a defended fortress — that surpasses the movie.
SCOTT I would almost say that the performance is the opposite of the movie. Ali is graceful, witty and self-aware while “Green Book” is clumsy, jokey and blind to its own insensitivities. I’m not sure any other actor could have handled the notorious fried chicken scene with such sly dignity. That “Green Book” and “Moonlight” were both best picture winners speaks to the contradictions of our cultural moment, but it’s proof of Ali’s talent that his subtle craft and unshakable charisma can anchor two such divergent films.
22. Melissa McCarthy
MANOHLA DARGIS When critics anatomize comic performers like Melissa McCarthy, we often touch on familiar qualities like timing, grace and elastic physiognomy. But we’re also talking about acting. Since making the transition from TV to movies, McCarthy has repeatedly demonstrated her range and exhilaratingly helped demolish regressive ideas about who gets to be a film star. No movie has served her better than “Spy”(2015) in which she plays Susan, a timid C.I.A. analyst who’s sent on an outlandish mission that allows McCarthy to mince and then delightfully swagger.
Essential to the subversive fun of “Spy” is how it deploys genre conventions to showcase McCarthy’s talents while also blowing up stereotypes. Susan contains multitudes, first as self-protection (she dampens her fire) and later as an expression of her humanity. In the field, she unhappily assumes several frumpy, tragically bewigged disguises — variations on how others see her — before transforming into a sexy, trash-talking fantasy of her own design. As Susan lets down her hair and inhibitions, McCarthy cuts loose. Her voice booms, her fluttery hands ball into fists, her Kewpie-doll face goes full-on Medusa. McCarthy isn’t playing one woman — she’s all of us, with a vengeance.
A. O. SCOTT Lee Israel is funny. She shares a fast and furiously aggressive verbal wit with some of McCarthy’s other creations, like Tammy in “Tammy” (2014) and Mullins in “The Heat” (2013). But Lee was a real person, and “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”(2018) isn’t exactly a comedy. It’s not quite a biopic either, but rather a highly specific slice of late-20th-century New York queer and literary life threaded through a misfit buddy picture and twisted into a caper film.
Lee is not easy to like or root for. She’s abrasive, self-absorbed and self-sabotaging. She alienates friends and maintains as tenuous a grip on ethics as on sobriety. McCarthy resists turning her story — which involves trading a faltering career as a writer for a lucrative stint as a forger of famous writers’ letters — into a parable of recovery or redemption.
It’s about how Lee and her sidekick (the wonderful Richard E. Grant) gamble on survival, rebelling against the fate that an indifferent world has prepared for them. The movie’s title poses an honest question. Maybe you can’t forgive Lee for her lapses and lies, her lack of consideration for other people’s words and feelings. But there’s no way you can forget her.
21. Catherine Deneuve
By MARJANE SATRAPI
In a lengthy career working with a who’s who of auteurs, Deneuve has stood for a certain kind of elegant Frenchwoman whether she’s playing an ordinary wife, a down-on-her-luck bistro owner or even an Iranian mother. For that last role, in the animated “Persepolis”(2007). Deneuve voiced a character based on Marjane Satrapi’s mom. We asked Satrapi, who directed the film with Vincent Paronnaud, to explain why she sought out Deneuve.
If you live in France, Catherine Deneuve is the symbol. When I was growing up, she was the dream. She always made choices that were too advanced for her time, more anarchist than bourgeois. She has always looked like a very bourgeois Parisian woman, which is absolutely not true. She is a rebel who looks like a grande dame.
The first time I met Catherine Deneuve was like meeting God in person. I was so impressed. And yet, I had to direct her, and I didn’t dare tell her a thing. The first two hours, I was completely paralyzed, and she calmed me down. She told me, because she’s a very generous woman: “You’re the director and I’m your actress. Tell me what to do and I will do it.” She didn’t do it in front of other people. She said, “Let’s go have a cigarette,” and she said it to me privately.
For the character of the mother, I needed to have someone who is not this eternal mother who is very lovely, because this is not my mom. My mom is a very lovely person but she is like: “You do this. You do that.” I needed somebody who had the power of a woman that wants her daughter to [make her life] better and be more emancipated. Catherine Deneuve has this way of talking that is not playful, because she doesn’t try to be likable. She’s very frank. When she talks to you, she looks straight into your eyes.
She doesn’t try to be likable. She’s very frank.
There is this scene when I come home and my mom starts yelling at me: “You know what they do with young girls in Iran? You have to get out of this country.” I remember when she played it, she was a little bit off. She tried to contain herself as she normally does. I was like, “No, Catherine, you’re really out of your mind.” She did it and she actually cried. That was extremely moving.
And still, after all these years, each time I see her, I have the heartbeat. She is like a lion. She is not loud, she does not make gestures. But even if she is behind you and you don’t see her, you feel that a feline is in the room. It feels at the same time very exciting and very dangerous. She is ferocious and she is fearless, and I love that about her. — Interview by Kathryn Shattuck
20. Rob Morgan
A. O. SCOTT The great character actors are masters of paradox, at once indelible and invisible. You don’t necessarily recognize them from one role to the next, but they leave their stamp on every film, enhancing the whole even in small parts.
If you saw “Mudbound,” “Monsters and Men,” “The Last Black Man in San Francisco”and “Just Mercy” — four movies released between 2017 and 2019 — you are aware of Rob Morgan, whether or not you know his name.
As a death row prisoner in “Just Mercy,” he is a notably undramatic presence, a quiet man haunted by remorse, helplessness and fear whose plight encapsulates the film’s humanist argument.
In each of the other movies, he plays a father, in the Jim Crow South and the modern urban North — a man who knows more than he chooses to say. The sons in those movies do most of the talking, but Morgan gives eloquent expression to experiences that lie outside the main story even as they ground it in a larger history. In “Last Black Man” he appears in a handful of scenes and utters just a few lines, but everything that movie is about — the pleasures and disappointments of life at the margins of an idiosyncratic, rapidly changing city — is written in his face. He listens, he chews sunflower seeds, he plays a few chords on an old pipe organ, and after a few minutes in his presence you understand exactly what you need to know.
MANOHLA DARGIS Every so often, a small movie gives an actor a chance to go bigger and hold the center, which is what Morgan does in Annie Silverstein’s “Bull” (2020). He plays Abe, a former rodeo bull rider with stiff joints, blood in his urine and a fragilely held together life. His bull riding days over, he now works on the ground as a bullfighter, helping protect fallen riders. The role of Abe, mercifully, isn’t overwritten, which allows Morgan to define the character with a persuasively embodied performance, one whose head tilts, sideways looks and withdrawn presence expresses a bruising past and the self-protecting instincts of a man in emotional retreat.
“Bull” should be only about Abe, but it instead focuses on his relationship with a white, rootless 14-year-old neighbor, Kris (Amber Havard). Their fates sourly cross after she’s caught trashing his house, and is shaped by the unearned optimism that’s foundational to American cinema. In other words, Abe and Kris save each other. What saves the movie, though, is the window Morgan opens onto the Black cowboy and how the performance complicates America’s favorite myths, including the figure of the hard, stoic loner. Abe doesn’t ride in from John Wayne territory; Abe rides in from an entirely different land that Morgan makes visceral, haunted and wholly alive.
19. Wes Studi
By MANOHLA DARGIS
Wes Studi has one of the screen’s most arresting faces — jutting and creased and anchored with the kind of penetrating eyes that insist you match their gaze. Lesser directors like to use his face as a blunt symbol of the Native American experience, as a mask of nobility, of suffering, of pain that’s unknowable only because no one has asked the man wearing it. In the right movie, though, Studi doesn’t just play with a character’s facade; he peels its layers. A master of expressive opacity, he shows you the mask and what lies beneath, both the thinking and the feeling.
He shows you the mask and what lies beneath.
Studi vaulted into cinematic consciousness as the vengeful Huron warrior in Michael Mann’s epic “The Last of the Mohicans” (1992), a character the actor conveys with powerful physicality and intensities of contempt, impatience, resentment, fury. Doing a lot with a little has been a constant in Studi’s movie career, which includes signifying roles in “The New World” (2005) and “Avatar” (2009). Like many actors, he has done his share of forgettable work, made exploitation flicks and TV fodder. Often specifically cast as a Native American, he has played Geronimo and Cochise; he might right more film wrongs if westerns were still popular. And if the industry were adventurous, he might also play more types like the supervisor of a homeless shelter in “Being Flynn” (2012), a man who doesn’t wear what Studi calls “leathers and feathers.”
Instructively, he wears neither in Scott Cooper’s “Hostiles” (2017), about life and death in late-19th-century America. Studi plays Chief Yellow Hawk, a dying Cheyenne prisoner whom the federal government has agreed to return to his ancestral lands. The movie is largely interested in his escort, a war-ruined Indian hater played by Christian Bale, the star. Once again, Studi delivers a supporting turn that complements the leading performance — his character’s indifference to the escort’s rage is a wall that can’t be breached — and helps equalize the story’s balance. Yellow Hawk has survived long enough to die on his terms, survival that Studi makes a final act of self-possession.
18. Willem Dafoe
By JULIAN SCHNABEL
The actor has been a vital presence in movies as different as “Shadow of the Vampire”(2000) and “The Florida Project” (2017), for which he received Oscar nominations. He was also nominated for playing van Gogh in Julian Schnabel’s biopic, “At Eternity’s Gate” (2018). We asked Schnabel why he turned to Dafoe.
Willem and I met more than 30 years ago. He has always lived in the neighborhood, and we had a lot of friends in common. Oliver Stone was shooting “The Doors” in New York, and we were standing around the set one night and that was the first time we really started to talk.
One thing that’s super-important is he’s a very generous actor. He cares about other people’s performances and about helping them by being available in whatever he is doing. He’s very, very loyal and very, very smart. If you’ve got somebody who’s smart, they can make it better.
He’s a very generous actor. He cares about other people’s performances.
[For “At Eternity’s Gate”] I needed somebody that would have the depth of character to play van Gogh. And it wasn’t about just looking like him. It was somebody that could have enough life experience to be that guy. People thought, well, Willem is 60 years old, van Gogh was 37 when he died. That was irrelevant to me. You just have to have a hunch about trusting somebody and thinking that they can do something. I trust Willem implicitly. And that level of trust goes both ways.
There’s stuff we shot in Arles after he arrived that we couldn’t use. He was wearing the same clothes, had the same hairdo, but he wasn’t the guy yet. Then there was a certain moment when all of a sudden he was. He was transformed, transfigured. He was somebody else.
One of my favorite scenes is where he’s talking to the young Dr. Rey, who is seeing him after he’s cut his ear off and he is guaranteeing him that he’s going to get to paint when he’s in the institution. That interaction is extraordinary, what Willem does there. He’s basically sitting at a table and there’s not a whole hell of a lot of room for movement. But what goes on in his face in his response to what the young doctor is saying to him — and also in response to whatever other thoughts seem to be traveling through his mind at that time — is a landscape of events and an interior life like foam coming to the top of a vanilla egg cream. — Interview by Kathryn Shattuck
17. Alfre Woodard
By A. O. SCOTT
In a just world, there would be a bursting roster of great performances to fill this entry, a collection of matriarchs, romantic heroines, divas and villains to reflect the full range of Alfre Woodard’s gifts. Such roles are always in short supply for Black women, but even in small parts in minor movies or television series, Woodard is an unforgettable presence, at once regal and utterly real.
The two films that have given her the most room — Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave”(2013) and Chinonye Chukwu’s “Clemency”(2019) — both place the question of justice front and center. In each, Woodard must assert her character’s dignity and ethical integrity in the face of impossibly cruel circumstances. Bernadine Williams, the prison warden in “Clemency” whose job includes supervising executions, finds her professionalism increasingly at odds with her humanity. In “12 Years,” Mistress Shaw, an enslaved woman whose relationship with a plantation owner has brought her a measure of privilege, has bargained with a system built on her dehumanization.
Woodard’s art, her commitment to truth, is what you see.
The contradictions that Bernadine and Mistress Shaw contend with are larger than any individual. What Woodard does is make them personal. Self-control is a matter of survival, and Woodard sets her face into a picture of proper decorum, impersonating the genteel Southern lady or the efficient bureaucrat that the situation requires. She doesn’t so much let the masks slip — except perhaps in the devastating final scenes of “Clemency” — as show the cost and care that go into wearing them. The characters are also performing, playing their roles for mortal stakes, and Woodard’s art, her commitment to truth, is what you see in the space between how they seem and who they are.
16. Kim Min-hee
By MANOHLA DARGIS
In Hong Sang-soo’s “Right Now, Wrong Then” (2016), a woman and man meet. They drink and drink some more and testily part ways only to meet in the movie’s second half as if for the very first time, a setup that evokes “Groundhog Day.” Once again, they go to a cafe, a studio, a restaurant. Yet while their actions generally remain the same, as does the overall arc of the evening, enough has changed — how they look at each other, the inflections in their voices — to turn this second encounter into something different.
Kim Min-hee’s exquisitely nuanced performance is at the center of the movie, and the actress herself has been at the heart of Hong’s work ever since, appearing in most of his ensuing movies. An established art-house auteur, Hong tells modestly scaled stories that are formally playful, sensitive to human imperfection and drenched in soju. Familiar things happen, sometimes unfamiliarly. Repetition is often a narrative focus, one that is grounded in life and beautifully served by Kim’s lucid expressivity.
In Hong’s minimalist canon, life is condensed in everyday moments, in conversations and the way bodies lean toward one another. The differences in the two halves of “Right Now, Wrong Then” reveal new facets of the characters and create new tensions between them. They also give free rein to Kim’s range, allowing her to play with intonation, gestures, flickering looks. Yet while the movie’s two sections feel like variations of the same story, her performance feels more like it’s coalescing as — smile by smile, with deflected and fixed gazes — Kim gathers the character into a whole.
She goes big and small, veers from monstrous to mousy.
She went for baroque in Park Chan-wook’s “The Handmaiden” (2016), her best-known movie. In this outlandish, often perversely funny drama set in Korea in the 1930s, she plays a Japanese noble who’s saved from her deviant uncle by her wiles and by another woman. The story’s flamboyant excesses and narrative twists allow Kim to use every tool in her workbox. She goes big and small, veers from monstrous to mousy, and alternately hides her character’s feelings and lets them run amok. Her body rocks and her face distorts as fear and pain give way to ecstasy and release. The character is a mystery that the movie teases but that Kim deliriously unlocks.
15. Michael B. Jordan
By RYAN COOGLER
Michael B. Jordan has played lawyers, athletes and superheroes, but even before his range became clear, the director Ryan Coogler wanted to work with him. Coogler has made three features (“Fruitvale Station,” “Creed” and “Black Panther”) and Jordan stars or co-stars in all of them. We asked the director to explain just what it is about the actor that draws us in.
I met Mike in 2012 when I was doing research and working on the script for “Fruitvale.” He was who I decided would be best for the role before I met him, based on the other work that I’d seen him do — a couple of movies that year, “Red Tails” and “Chronicle,” and a bunch of stuff in the TV space. But I thought that he could play Oscar. He looked like him, but also what I saw was this ability to make you empathize with him. Not all actors have this thing, when you immediately care about somebody right offhand and that triggers an empathetic reaction. He had that. He also has a very advanced tool kit as an actor.
What I saw was this ability to make you empathize with him.
He’s been in all the feature films I’ve done. And I keep casting him because he’s the best person for the job. “Creed” [2015] had another character I thought he could play well. Before Mike was an actor, he was an athlete, back in elementary school and high school. He had played athletes on TV, the most famous being on “Friday Night Lights,” so some of the things we knew his character would have to do in “Creed,” Mike felt right for it. It was a part of him that wasn’t a big reach.
And [in] “Black Panther” [2018], with him and Chadwick facing off and going toe to toe, it felt like an event. Their stars were rising. They were both leading men by the time we shot that movie.
Now, what’s exciting about us getting older in the industry is getting to work together in different capacities. He’s doing a lot of stuff behind the camera now. And we have some opportunities to work together beyond actor and director.
He’s very ambitious in a way that’s endearing. He always wants to push and challenge himself further. And that comes across in his performances, but also in the business sense. That ambition keeps him open-minded. He watches everything and doesn’t want to cut himself off from certain genres or opportunities. So I think the sky’s the limit for him and his career. — Interview by Mekado Murphy
14. Oscar Isaac
A. O. SCOTT While I can take or leave the recent “Star Wars” movies, I do have a fondness for some of the characters, in particular Poe Dameron, the resistance flyboy who is the third trilogy’s designated charmer. As Poe, Oscar Isaac is an appealing, easygoing presence in those movies, a guy who seems to know what he’s doing.
His characters aren’t always as lucky, or as sure of themselves, but the man himself operates with the precision of someone who is confident enough in his skills to push himself into risky new territory. The summer before “Inside Llewyn Davis” (2013) was released, Joel and Ethan Coen told us that they had originally wanted to cast a well-known musician in the title role. Instead, they found Isaac, who told them (according to Joel) that “most actors, if you ask them if they play guitar, they’ll say they played guitar for 20 years, but what they really mean is they’ve owned a guitar for 20 years.” Isaac could actually play. When I think about what makes him so credible as an actor, that’s the first thing that comes to mind. Not because it’s such a big deal to play guitar, but because whatever Isaac is pretending to do onscreen — selling heating oil (in the underrated “A Most Violent Year,” (2014); inventing sexy robots (in “Ex Machina”); flying X-wing fighters — I always believe that he really knows how to do it, and that I’m watching some kind of authentic mastery in action.
MANOHLA DARGIS When actors make a profound first impression, they sometimes get bound up with your ideas about what they can do. After “Llewyn Davis,” I associated Isaac with soulful defeat, with an undercurrent of grudging resentment. A few other roles shored up this idea of his innate mournfulness, including his performance as a besieged mayor in the HBO series “Show Me a Hero” (2015). This partly has to do with his broody, romantic looks and how his brows frame his luxuriously lashed eyes. And then there’s his voice, its pretty sound but also how its resonance creates intimacy. Even when he puts nasal in it, his voice retains a quality of closeness, one reason it often feels, sounds, like Llewyn is singing more for himself than the audience. Isaac’s voice also softens his beauty, drawing you in. Sometimes, though, as in “Ex Machina,” he uses that intimacy for something insinuating, sinister.
Isaac has a supporting role in “Ex Machina” (2015), but he’s vital to its vibe and power. He plays Nathan, a Dr. Frankenstein-like tech billionaire involved in artificial intelligence who’s building (and destroying) beautiful female androids. A savagely critical stand-in for today’s masters of the digital universe, Nathan could easily have dominated the movie. Isaac instead keeps his own charm in check, letting the character’s creepiness poison the air. Nathan’s mercurial moods and surprising looks — his shaved head and full beard, eyeglasses and cut muscles — make it difficult to get a bead on him. But when he suddenly boogies down, executing an amazing dance, Isaac lays bare all you need to know about Nathan in the geometric precision of his choreographed moves and the madness in his eyes. It’s 30 seconds of pure genius.
13. Tilda Swinton
MANOHLA DARGIS The woman of a thousand otherworldly faces, Tilda Swinton has created enough personas — with untold wigs, costumes and accents — to have become a roster of one. She’s a star, a character actor, a performance artist, an extraterrestrial, a trickster. Her pale, sharply planed face is an ideal canvas for paint and prosthetics, and capable of unnerving stillness. You want to read her but can’t. That helps make her a terrific villain, whether she’s playing a demon, a queen or a corporate lawyer. In “Julia” (2009), she drops that wall to play an out-of-control alcoholic and child-snatcher, giving a full-throttled performance that is so visceral and transparent that you can see the character’s thoughts furiously at work, like little parasites moving under the skin.
A. O. SCOTT We like to praise actors for “range,” but that’s an almost laughably inadequate word for the radical shape-shifting that Swinton accomplishes. Just look at one strand of her career: her work with Luca Guadagnino, a filmmaker who shares her delight in self-reinvention. In “I Am Love” (2010) she played the Russian wife of an Italian aristocratic, giving a performance in two languages and in the key of pure melodramatic heartbreak. In “A Bigger Splash” (2016) she had barely any language at all: She decided that it would be interesting if her glam-rock diva character had been struck mute by throat surgery. In “Suspiria” (2018) she executed one of her many self-doublings, appearing as a member of a balletomaniac coven of witches and also as an elderly male Holocaust survivor.
DARGIS That doubling shapes her most androgynous performances, where she effortlessly blurs gender, confirming (yet again) the inadequacy of categories like “man” and “woman.” She’s both; she’s neither. A different doubling happens when she plays twins, in the 2016 “Hail, Caesar!”(as rival gossip columnists) and in “Okja”the next year (as visually distinct very cruel captains of industry). In each, Swinton shows us two sides of the same person, much as she does in “Michael Clayton” (2007) when her lawyer rehearses a duplicitous spiel in front of a mirror. As the lawyer talks, pauses and drops her smile, you see her desperately trying to control a reflection that is already cracking.
SCOTT Those roles can be theatrical, but they almost never feel gimmicky. Swinton has roots in an avant-garde tradition — earlier in her career, she worked with Derek Jarman and Sally Potter — that emphasizes the mutability of identity and the blurred boundaries between artifice and authenticity. Over the past 20 years she has brought some of the intellectual rigor and conceptual daring of that work to Hollywood and beyond. She’s not only a uniquely exciting performer, but also one of the great living theorists of performance.
12. Joaquin Phoenix
By JAMES GRAY
Joaquin Phoenix has appeared in four of the director James Gray’s movies, starting with “The Yards” in 2000 and including “We Own the Night” (2007), “Two Lovers” (2009) and “The Immigrant” (2014). We asked Gray to explain how the actor has expanded — and improved — on his own vision.
When I saw “To Die For,” I said, “That actor” — I didn’t even know his name yet — “is unbelievably good at conveying his internal life without dialogue.” That’s a really important thing in cinema, because the camera reveals everything. Here was an actor who had so much going on and you could tell. I thought, “That’s a very interesting actor. I’d love to meet him.” And I did.
We were on the same wavelength, instantly. We liked the same things. We thought about things the same way. And I just immediately liked him. He had that dimensionality to him. The first film we did together [“The Yards”], I’m sure that I pissed him off a lot. I have a very direct way. Sometimes that’s good and sometimes it’s not so good. I’m better at it now. Let’s just say that I wasn’t always willing to say, “Yeah, that’s interesting, but let’s try this.” I was more into, “Joaq, what are you doing? That sucks, try another one.” And I know I would frustrate him because his talent was so vast.
He has a limitless ability to surprise you in the best ways and inspire you to move in a direction that you haven’t thought of originally, better than what you have in mind, and expands the idea. He’s extremely inventive. He’s always thinking and actually has gotten more so over the years. I’ve never said, “I want my vision on the screen.” I want something better than that. You want to lay down the parameters of what it is you have in mind, and then surround yourself with people who will make it all more beautiful. Not different, necessarily, but more intense, more vivid.
He has a limitless ability to surprise you in the best ways.
You want the actor to surprise you, and to do so in a way that seems consistent with the character but also very interesting. Joaquin was absolutely fantastic at that. That’s inspiring. You don’t know what to expect in the best sense. Joaquin Phoenix is one of the best things that’s ever happened to me. If I have any regret at all, it would be that he’s not in every single movie I made. — Interview by Candice Frederick
11. Julianne Moore
A. O. SCOTT The unhappy American housewife — smiling to keep up appearances in the face of domestic tragedy and inner turmoil — is a durable movie archetype. It’s one that Julianne Moore has both explored and exploded, in “The Hours” (2002) and especially in her collaborations with Todd Haynes like “Far From Heaven” (2002).
That film is set in Connecticut in the 1950s, but it’s a pointedly stylized landscape, evocative of the Hollywood melodramas of that period. Cathy and Frank Whitaker (Moore and Dennis Quaid) are each pulled away from their stifling marriage by forbidden desires: Frank for other men, Cathy for Raymond Deagan, a Black landscaper (Dennis Haysbert). These transgressions aren’t symmetrical or intersectional. In their heartbreak, humiliation and longing, Frank and Cathy have no consolation to offer each other.
Moore could have placed Cathy’s anguish in quotation marks, evoking the suffering divas of ’50s cinema while winking at a modern audience contemplating the bad old days from a safe aesthetic distance. Instead, she goes all the way in, staring out from the soul of a woman who is rooted in her time and absolutely modern, trapped by rules and appearances and also — terrifyingly and thrillingly — free.
MANOHLA DARGIS Unhappy or not, wives can be dead ends for actresses and for too many there comes that time when they’ve been forever banished to the kitchen. Moore has played plenty of wives and mothers, but hers are sometimes more complex and surprising than her movies, an index of her sensitivities and talent. One reason she lifts her characters out of stereotype is that she plays with codes of realism, whether she’s delivering a naturalistic performance (“Still Alice,” the 2014 melodrama about a professor with Alzheimer’s) or a hyperbolic one (David Cronenberg’s 2015 satire “Maps to the Stars,” where she’s a Hollywood hyena). Moore can externalize a character’s interior state beautifully, so you see feelings surface on her skin. But she’s an artist of extremes, and she and Cronenberg have fun playing with her gargoyle faces.
For the most part, her work in “Gloria Bell”(2019) is in a realist key. She plays the title character, a generous-hearted divorced insurance worker with two adult children, an ex she doesn’t hate and an achingly lonely apartment. The movie itself is modest, intimate, thoughtful and rich in human detail. Gloria starts an affair with a man. It goes badly, they break up. Not much happens in ordinary movie terms, yet everything happens because Gloria loves and is loved in turn. It’s a story that could have led to buckets of snot and empty showboating. But Moore and the director Sebastián Lelio transcend obviousness. They don’t merely create a story about a woman’s feelings — and being — as she falls in love; they create a landscape of emotions, the texture and shape of a sensibility. Moore’s Gloria doesn’t cry and laugh; she shows you what love looks like from the inside. It’s a miracle of a performance.
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2020.11.23 13:30 SirParsifal Live sex caught in camera

The last decade of baseball sure has been fun, hasn’t it? We’ve had thrills, we’ve had chills, we’ve had spills, . But a decade is a long time, and much has been forgotten: So let’s look back on the 2020s, and all the things that happened in it! We begin in...
2021 January: Hype builds around the top free agent of the season, Trevor Bauer. After announcing that he will not accept any deals that do not have leading numbers of either 69 or 420, front offices scramble to free up the necessary budget space.
February: As players arrive at spring training, there is an astounding amount of hype surrounding the young superstar Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who is reported by multiple news outlets as being in, ‘the worst shape of his life’.
March: After four intense months of free agent negotiations, Trevor Bauer announces he plans to take a gap year to explore his possible options in life.
On Opening Day, Byron Buxton runs full-tilt into the outfield wall while trying to track down a Jorge Soler home run. He breaks three wrists and is out for the remainder of the season, sparing Twins fans the disappointment of seeing him waste his batting potential.
April: Mike Fiers, sick of being snubbed by front offices due to his role in blowing the whistle on the Astros sign stealing scandal, writes a tell-all where he claims he was the brains behind the whole operation. Eight different MLB clubs and Bill Belicheck immediately send him a contract offer.
May: Mark Reynolds announces his retirement on the grounds of being completely blind. He is promptly offered a lucrative contract by the umpire’s union.
June: On June 12, highly touted prospect Seth Beer makes his major league debut with the Arizona Diamondbacks. He uses ‘Beer’ by Reel Big Fish as his walkup song, and is immediately banned from baseball for life for reminding people that ska existed.
July: Fernando Tatis Jr. again ignites controversy from the media and from former players after being intentionally walked when his team is up by ten. “That is a disgusting act by Fernando Tatis Jr. and it's unfortunate that we had that on our air live”, says Joe Buck, calling the game for FOX, “That is disgusting by Tatis”.
Toronto continues their long-standing tradition of signing prospects who were born of somebody who screwed someone who used to be a good major league player by bringing A.J. Burnett Jr. into their minor league system.
August: Hawk Harrelson returns to broadcast a single game for the White Sox. Chicago gives up ten runs in the first, and Hawk remains completely silent for the last eight innings.
After years of controversy, the Cleveland Indians finally announce their rebrand. Their announcement states, “We waited far too long to get rid of Chief Wahoo. We’re not going to be late to the party for the next step. With Washington rebranding, it’s time to strike while the iron is hot. We recognize that there will likely be uproar, but history will vindicate us. From now on, the team will be known as the Ohio Indians”.
September: The MLB marketing team goes into overdrive and announces the creation of MLBFilms, a movie company developing films starring MLB players to try to increase their public image.
October: The Mariners put the final touches on a blessed season by mounting a five-run comeback against the Angels in the bottom of the ninth inning of game 162. Kyle Seager hits a walk-off grand slam to cap it off. They finish 73-89.
November: With the close of the 2021 season, the collective bargaining agreement between the MLB and the Player’s Union ends. For the sake of everyone’s sanity, both sides agree to ignore this.
After further investigation into the Astros sign stealing scandal, the Comissioners’s Office announces new sanctions: Cleveland State will receive the ‘death penalty’.
December: The Rockies broadcast team welcomes Matt Holliday as their new color commentator. The longtime Colorado player joins Drew Goodman, Ryan Spilbroughs, and Jeff Huson in the booth.
A.J Pierzynski receives two votes for the Hall of Fame and immediately demands a recount.
2022 January: Tim Lincecum, long time Giants fan favorite, announces his intent to come back to baseball. ‘I’ve been out of this game too long. I wasn’t sure if the fans and the team would accept me after all this time, but the support I’ve received has been incredible. When this position as a bat boy opened up, I knew it was made for me”. He will face stiff competition from a number of eight year olds to fill the position
MLBFilms announces their first movie: a four hour long, Scorsese-directed gender swapped version of A League of Their Own. It stars Mike Trout, Bryce Harper, Giancarlo Stanton, and Mo’ne Davis. It will be cinema.
February: The Blue Jays show some concern as Vladimir Guerrero Jr seems to have gained more weight during the offseason, ballooning up to 300 pounds, and requesting a position change to designated hitter.
March: Tragedy strikes Tampa Bay as Tropicana Field is mistaken for an abandoned shopping mall and torn down by a demolitions company. The goof isn’t noticed for almost a week until a group of Yankees fans arrives to buy tickets.
April: Trevor Bauer finally decides to sign with someone, and signs a $69 million, 4.20 year deal with the White Sox for the express purpose of trying to get suspended by Tony La Russa.
May: The Rays announce they are rebuilding Tropicana Field exactly as it was, brick-for-brick. They put out a call for any Yankees fans who might have attended the stadium in the last few years to send pictures to work off of, as the original plans for the Trop were traded to the Mariners for cash considerations years ago.
Nelson Cruz invites controversy after choosing the 17 minute version of ‘In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida’ as his walkup song, and not stepping into the box until the entire song is finished. He manages to avoid getting plunked by pitchers until he starts doing air-guitars with the bat and drumming the solo on home plate.
June: The MLB marketing team jumps back into action by putting pictures of Spiderman on the bases, presumably on direct order from J. Jonah Jameson. This is immediately met with massive backlash from every human being on earth, including Spiderman himself. Bud Selig counters, “Suck it up, buttercup.” This is a real thing that happened.
The Braves pay Bruce Sutter ten million dollars and thank their lucky stars that Bobby Bonilla gets all the press.
July: The umpire’s union receives serious backlash after Ron Kulpa blows a ball-strike ball on a David Price perfect game in progress, causing him to walk Nick Castellanos with two outs in the first inning.
Joe Buck broadcasts the entire Home Run Derby solo, saying, ‘And we will see you tomorrow night’ in a straight, monotone voice for every single home run; gradually increasing in volume until he yells at the top of his lungs continually during the final round. It receives the highest ever ratings for any television event ever. Jo Adell wins with three total home runs.
On July 21st, in a game against the Diamondbacks, Kenley Jansen intentionally balks to move a runner from second to third. Sensing unwritten rules being broken, Brian McCann punches his way out of his grave beneath the mound and hits Jansen with a DDT, killing him instantly.
August: Tony La Russa publicly announces he is moving on to a more sabermetric way of managing, and moves his center fielder out of the first spot in the batting order. “Perhaps, depending on how this goes, I may even move the catcher out of the ninth spot in the order.”
September: As their season ends, the Ohio Indians announce another name change, citing how large the backlash was and how offensive they learned their name was to the millions of people who were not acclimatized to it. They are now known as the Lake Erie Indians.
October: The Marlins, after years of careful management by Derek Jeter, sweep the National League playoffs on their way to a World Series victory over the Athletics in six games. Immediately after hoisting the trophy, the entire front office is sold off to other franchises to save salary room.
After the World Series, Bud Selig officially announces his retirement as MLB commissioner. “After thirty years in this position, it’s time for me to move on. I am grateful to the owners throughout Major League Baseball for their unwavering support and for allowing me to lead this great institution. I thank our players, who give me unlimited enthusiasm about the future of our game. Together we have taken this sport to new heights and have positioned our national pastime to thrive for generations to come. Most of all, I would like to thank our fans, who are the heart and soul of our game.” Tony Clark is thought to be next in line for the position.
November: Bill James publishes his new book, The Measure of a Man, where he has an exact formula worked out for the value of individual human lives. Mike Trout is worth exactly $290,322,784.32. You are worth twelve cents.
December: The Winter Meetings begin with a bang as the Mariners announce they are trading Kyle Lewis for ten of the Yankees’ wins next year. DiPoto says, “They probably won’t need them, and although we aren’t going to get enough to win the whole shebang, we might be able to get the 15 percent share to get an invite to the debates. With that kind of media coverage, who knows where we can go?”
2023 January: The Nationals announce that Mike Rizzo is stepping down as President of Baseball Operations, but not before giving himself ‘a full and legal pardon for all crimes he may or may not have committed while in his position, and for all the crimes he may or may not commit in the future.’
The Athletic releases a shocking exposé showing that Tim Wakefield’s ‘rolling contract’ on the Red Sox will actually never expire due to a legal technicality. The Red Sox owe him $4 million, every year, until the heat death of the universe.
February: The MLB marketing team puts pictures of Mike Trout on milk cartons, with the caption, ‘Have You Seen This Kiiiiiiiid?’. The only result is the occasional call to the missing persons hotline whenever somebody accidentally tunes into an Angels game.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. arrives at spring training announcing that he feels lighter and faster than ever, due to his fat folds being held up by repulsorlifts like Baron Vladimir Harkonnen in Dune.
March: Disaster strikes the Oakland Coliseum as the Wave takes hold of the stadium on opening day. Thousands of people die either of exhaustion or starvation. The governor attempts to declare a disaster zone, but finds out that legally, the entirety of Oakland has been a disaster for the last thirty years.
April: Nothing happened this month.
May: The Boston Red Sox are caught up in yet another cheating scandal, where the Blue Jays allege that Tom Brady, somehow, managed to deflate their baseballs before a key playoff game in 2022.
Byron Buxton runs headfirst into a Mack truck that was accidentally left parked in Target Field’s outfield by the ground crew. He loses eight ribs from the resulting surgery and is out for 6-8 weeks.
Robbie Cano is banned from the MLB for life after testing positive for shooting up black tar heroin into his eyeball.
June: Matt Holliday is suspended from his broadcast job after claims that, in the past, he had ‘inappropriately touched’ home plate during his Rockies career.
Tom Brady is ambushed at his house by Brian McCann and tombstoned directly into the driveway, killing him instantly. There are no witnesses.
July: Fernando Tatis Jr. is suspended by the Padres without pay for a week after being hit by a pitch with the bases loaded while up by twelve over the Dodgers. John Smoltz condemns his repulsive behavior by running up the score. Lynch mobs assemble outside Petco Park.
Billy Hamilton wins the Home Run Derby after discovering that inside the park home runs are not technically banned. He racks up 783 home runs in the first round alone before the kids playing the outfield figure out what’s going on.
August: Matt Holliday is cleared and reinstated to his job after no evidence was found of him actually touching home plate. In a public statement, he thanks the Padres for their longtime support and their hard work to clear his name in this matter.
During a Braves-Marlins game, the disembodied head of Joe Buck appears on the Fox Sports South broadcast on all cameras and stares wistfully into the camera for twenty-two seconds before bleeding from the eyes and fading away. Buck declines to comment on the matter.
September: Jose Canseco announces in a tweet that, if he is not elected to the Hall of Fame by the Veteran’s Committee immediately, he will not intervene to save us all from the upcoming singularity robot apocalypse.
October: In the Wild Card game against the Blue Jays, the Astros again invite controversy by calling the other team’s bullpen phone constantly and telling Ken Giles to stop warming up; twenty-seven times in the eighth inning alone. With Toronto unable to use their bullpen, Russell Martin comes in for the save situation and gives up seventeen runs. Charlie Montoyo attempts to protest the game, but the Astros yell so loud at the umpires that they can’t hear what he’s saying.
Pete Rose reveals that he was behind the 1978 Boston College point shaving scandal, and boy, did he make a ton of money from that. He is immediately banned for life from the Basketball Hall of Fame.
November: Both the American and National leagues award their MVP award to Albert Belle despite him being out of the league for twenty years, as he certainly did not deserve to lose to Mo Vaughn in 1995. Pedro Martinez finishes a close second.
Albert Pujols’ home run against Brad Lidge finally lands, killing millions on impact.
December: At the Winter Meetings, Brett Favre formally announces his retirement from the NFL.
The Yankees flex their checks and sign one of the best pitchers ever to have played the game for 15yrs/450million: Christopher Robin from Winnie The Pooh Home Run Derby.
2024 January: In an explosive piece of investigative journalism, The Athletic discovers that Joe Buck has ties to Russia. Buck categorically denied the allegations in a press statement, adding, ‘And we will see you tomorrow night. In court.’
Jose Canseco is unanimously elected to the Hall of Fame.
February: Vladimir Guerrero Jr arrives at spring training by oozing through the windows of the practice facility and reforming himself into a man-like form in the hallways. He moves to the outfield, as he now covers enough ground that the ball will never hit the turf.
March: MLB The Show 2024 releases to rave reviews from critics, despite being the exact same game as MLB the Show 2023 and MLB the Show 2022. It is voted the best sports game of the year for the simple fact that they did not remove features from last year’s game.
On opening day, Dusty Baker announces to the umpires that he will be playing the entire season under protest. He gives no explanation.
April: Spencer Torkelson makes his MLB debut for the Tigers, lasting an entire at-bat before the umpires pull him from the game and send him back to the 1890s where his name belongs.
The Yankees announce that they are moving away from the pinstripe uniforms which have dominated their style since the early days of the club, and are switching to more iconic and beloved uniforms - the 1970s Houston Astros rainbow jerseys, effective immediately. Yankees fans strenuously object because it’s harder to look like assholes when wearing bright, happy colors.
May: Aroldis Chapman mirrors Randy Johnson when, during a save opportunity at Yankee Stadium, he brings down a low-flying single engine plane with a pitch, killing the pilot. This becomes the second-worst plane accident involving a Yankees pitcher in New York in the last twenty years.. [Editor’s note: This is not a 9/11 joke. That would be incredibly distasteful and disrespectful to the thousands of Americans that died on that day. This is a joke about Corey Lidle, whose death is slightly more socially acceptable to make light of.]
June: Scientists working with the New York Yankees announce new developments in doing The Wave, led by observations at Yankee Stadium. This new version of The Wave, endorsed by Yankees fans around the world, will be done only with the middle finger.
July: MLBFilms announce their next release - a collaboration with Warner Bros: Scooby-Doo! Batter Up!, where the Scooby gang meets Bryce Harper and the Phillies and have to defeat a ghost that possessed the Philly Phanatic and locked the team inside Citizens Bank Park. The city of Philadelphia defeats the ghost by throwing batteries at it, and it’s revealed to have been Gritty all along. This is not a joke.
For the fifteenth and final time, the Reds pay Ken Griffey Jr. 3.6 million dollars, ending his deferred contract. The Reds front office once again thanks the Mets for being such boneheads that nobody cares that other teams have far, far worse deferred contracts than they do. Although none of the other ones had to do with Bernie Madoff.
August: The Blue Jays announce that they are negotiating with LeBron James, Jr for a minor league deal.
Brett Gardner tests positive for having a giant fucking head and is suspended by the MLB for 80 games. He appeals on grounds of the test possibly being a false positive, and the possibility that vitamins he took were contaminated, and that, as a sovereign citizen, the MLB has no right to test him. He also tests positive for eleven different steroids, which he does not contest.
September: Tony La Russa announces his retirement at the end of the season, citing his early stages of dementia. This confirms the rumors that spread around the league after La Russa wandered off in the middle of a game to find the nearest Cracker Barrel.
October: Fernando Tatis Jr. disrespects the game of baseball by arriving at Petco for a game after the Padres have clinched the top seed in the playoffs. Brain McCann materializes out of the aether and hits Tatis with an elbow off the top ropes, killing him instantly.
The MLB announces a new broadcast format for the World Series, where Don Orsillo and Jerry Remy will sit silhouetted in front of a screen with the official Joe Buck/Tim McCarver broadcast and heckle them constantly, MST3k style. It is cancelled after one game after complaints from Joe Buck’s mother.
November: Radical sabermetricians make the news by making threats against the MLB, warning that unless announcers actually learn how WAR and FIP work, ‘there will be consequences’. Commissioner Tony Clark gives a strong speech, responding that the MLB ‘does not negotiate with terrorists. We don’t even negotiate with the MLBPA most of the time’’.
December: The Red Sox trade Tim Wakefield’s rolling contract to the Mariners in exchange for the Mariners’ franchise history and the cutout of a baseball player that sits outside a Lowe’s in Seattle.
2025 January: The St. Louis Cardinals accidentally delete their Excel 95 spreadsheet listing their minor league prospects. It’s estimated that up to 200 ballplayers were lost, and though scouts managed to retrieve some of them, a large number still cannot be accounted for.
February: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. announces his retirement from baseball to star in an MLBFilms remake of ‘The Blob’.
March: The MLB floats the idea of having a ‘three batter minimum’ for pitchers, so that teams won’t continually switch pitchers to gain a handedness advantage. This is laughed at by everyone, so they forget about it. The idea never comes up again.
April: In an otherwise routine game at Target Field, Byron Buxton is tracking down a routine pop fly when he suddenly runs headlong into the evidence that Pete Rose bet against the Reds, shattering every bone in his body and eight in Max Kepler’s.
May: The Mets broadcast leaves a live mic on Zach Greinke, which picks up what he’s constantly mumbling about while on the mound. A transcript: “Dog carcass in alley this morning. Tire tread on burst stomach. The city is afraid [strikes out Tim Anderson] of me. I have seen it's true face. The streets are extended gutters and the gutters are full of blood and when the drains finally scab over all the [induces a Chad Wallach pop-up] vermin will drown. The accumulated filth of all their sex and murder will foam up about their waists and and all the whores and politicians will look up and shout "save us!"... and I'll look down from the mound and [retires Derek Dietrich on three pitches] whisper "no"”
June: June 28, 2025. A date which will live in infamy. Everyone remembers where they were on that day. The pictures are burned into the brain of every man, woman, and child watching the All-Star game.
The black helicopter landing in center field.
The masked figures kicking a bound and gagged David Eckstein out of the door.
Their speech through the loudspeaker system, calling for the deaths of all those who stood in the way of progress. You all know what followed.
When that helicopter took off, leaving a four foot eight corpse on the field, the relationship between baseball and statistics was changed forever. SABR was declared a terrorist organization, and although Bill James denied any involvement and denounced the perpetrators, he would never be looked at the same. The FBI tracks him for the rest of his life.
July: C.C. Sabathia, Brian McCann, and the corpse of David Eckstein are inducted into the Hall of Fame. During his speech, Sabathia briefly mentions breaking the unwritten rules of baseball, and Brian McCann hits him with a steel chair, killing him instantly.
A huge remembrance of David Eckstein’s life takes place among the media.
“How can a man weighing 45 pounds and only two and a half feet tall make such an impression on the hearts of man? Not everyone has the grit, the determination, the grit, the dirtiness, the courage, the grit, or the grit to win in the MLB, but that’s only because Eckstein took the grit from all those people to use himself.”
“We all remember Eckstein single-handedly dragging the Cardinals to a World Series victory, but it’s easy to overlook his other work, and not just because he was so short. This was a man whose bodily fluids were filled with lunch pails.”
August: SABR’s hitlist is leaked by government agencies. It includes the two bozos who left Pedro Martinez off the MVP ballot, 90’s Joe Carter, John Smoltz, and everyone who ever wrote an article about David Eckstein, ‘to wipe clean the scum of the earth’. All of these people are immediately placed under police protection except John Smoltz, who refused it as he never believed in sabermetrics anyway.
September: A source inside the MLB suggests that they should have been more prepared for a terrorist attack, saying, “These guys are literally named SABR - could they have more of a Bond villain secret organization name? And look at their mission statement: ‘we seek the deaths of those who would desecrate our great national pastime, and those who refuse to understand it.’ - shouldn’t that have turned some heads? I believe that the MLB intentionally ignored this threat so they could go to war with SABR and then seize their oil”. Tony Clark refuses comment.
Tony La Russa announces his retirement from baseball at the end of the season.
October: After a long and storied career, Albert Pujols announces his retirement and immediately ages 150 years to return to his true age like Donovan at the end of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Both dugouts rush his desiccated body to claim the bones as good luck charms.
November: David Eckstein is posthumously inducted into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame as an honorary member of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.
The NAACP makes headlines when they release their list of Greatest Baseball Players of All Time, due to Jose Bautista taking the #1 spot over from Jackie Robinson. They justify it by saying ‘Jose Bautista is the Harriet Tubman of his times”.
December: After missing the playoffs for the tenth straight year, the Philadelphia Phillies trade Bryce Harper to the New York Yankees for a sack of potatoes.
Part 2: 2026-2030
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2020.11.14 20:21 SavingMyDaughters New here... Clueless and confused and all.

Hi,
First of all, thanks for letting me get rid of all this here... I hope I can give back a bit of this one day. Fasten your seatbelts, a big chunk coming up...
The motto of the story could be "Mother to daughter: The key to a good marriage is to find someone who is rich, handsome, and sensitive. And not let these 3 people ever near each other".
Situation is the run of the mill kind. Man and woman meet, get along well, mortgage, kids, journeys happyness. Each Saturday, we organize trips, and we have our little customs, like doing the same things each year. Then things start to fade. Second kid, mortgage again, loved ones start to go away. She is always "tired" or "has headache" when intimacy would happen.
Then one day woman goes online to see what's there to have in life. Love happens, man suffers quietly (not yet realizing at first, just suspecting). They hang out a lot online. All in Covid, she starts to disappear for the weekends. "To visit a female friend, who has a cute little daughter". However, they seem to live in a different city than what they have listed on Facebook... Then they break up. Happyness? No. Woman finds another 3rd wheel. Then the 2nd one comes back too.
Then she comes out of the closet one day, telling that our marriage is "not that bad", and that she is not that into monogamy, and that she just needs a bit of time alone, and I should not interfere with her desire for freedom. And that she doesn't feel any desire for me as a man.
In short, I didn't want to lose her and what I built, so I sort of got mad, but composed myself. This was mid September. Then I started spying on her. Got some of her Messenger messages, and I know a lot. Probably too much for my own good. They had sex. That is 99.9% I heard her explain it (she was talking through Discord in our own home - she just didn't know I'm at the other side of the door...
When asking questions I know the answers for, she repeatedly lied to me. When I asked her directly, like with the exact words she wrote on Messenger, telling her "I glanced over", she admitted.
Stuff like this she admitted:

I have a lot of material on her. I didn't want to crush her though (probably a mistake on my side), and kept the majority for myself.
So what I now, I'm 3rd in line. The guy who pays, and is the father to two little girls (name check out).
Woman (wife? mother? not sure anymore) goes away 3 of the 4 weekends to meet the two. Guess which weekend she is at home. Intimacy? She is a good actress, I must admit. We had been together, but it was not sincere. Also, her behavior during being intimate changed a lot.
I flipped out a few times, we had arguments, and she always denies that she cheated on me. Before the birthday of our smaller daughter, she put on a mask, and started world class acting, even fooled me once again: things were seemingly going the right way. Not 100%, but I'm not the greedy type. But the 2 weeks since then: nothing. Like I'm back to the box I live in. She is on her phone texting all day, etc. I even caught her masturbating through the security camera to porn... So she does have sexual desire, though she denies that to me. And also, she reassures me that I'm "quite good" (I know I'm not, she's my only real partner...)
I'm starting to lose it. It is a hell of a rollercoaster ride. I'm not angry because she has sex with someone else. It is the infidelity. The lies, and that I can not trust her anymore. The woman I had dreams of getting old together with. Who I provide with whatever I can, who I trusted to bear my children.
There are also a few mistakes I made in my life... Like not having a marriage contract... I also let her manage our finances. This results in her handling the invoices, etc. So I don't really know where the money goes, etc... She has all the freedom to book rooms on Booking to have her affairs with stud #3 (he is from a city 2 hours from here).
She also does not work. Worked like 2 years in her entire life (at the beginning of our relationship). (And lied to her mother for years when she was fired, that she got another job... And I was covering for her.)
She also knows all my passwords, and I (supposedly) don't know hers. 2FA makes my job a lot tougher. Or it saves my life by protecting from something I should not know? I don't know anymore.
She is today again at stud #2 (The handsome one). "Watching movies". A-ha. The guy has a quite explicit profile on one of the porn sites (has his regular profile name).
She is not a mother I would be proud of. Since this all started, she smokes. She makes her kids lie to their grandparents about her whereabouts. She isn't available for them: when she is on the phone, or watches her series, she is not approachable.
She is not a good wife. I get up at 6:30, she gets up at 9-10 AM... We go to bed at 11PM -midnight, or some time later... Work? Nope. Excuses? You bet. She needs freedom, and all that. I have to accept it...
I am by far not perfect either: I'm not manly and attractive at all (believe me, this is true. I'm around 5' 5", and I am ectomorphic for a body shape), I work a lot, and I'm not the best father. I'm also insecure - bearing the weight of a difficult childhood, and various difficulties up until early adulthood.
I'm trying my best, but I'm the one who works, and to keep this all up, I need to put in a lot... I also take them to school in the morning, and get one of them back in the afternoon - because she doesn't want to to this. She at least fetches one of them. I have no time to play with my kids. I also keep our house in order - there is always something to fix, and as she does not work, I need to do this.
Ok, I'm already feeling a lot lighter, and sorry for making your shoulders more heavy,
I need your help though. I feel between a rock and a hard place. What should I do? I feel I need to act on so many fronts that I'm feeling lost and powerless.
My priorities:
I thought about shutting her out of the finance part. I'd just ask her to dump the invoices on my desk and I could pay them through the online bank interface. It would hit her very badly. There would be screaming, breaking things and probably hitting me. This would probably end up as a domestic violence call. (I need good cameras...)
Or I could just pack up and leave. I have a place to stay - not perfect, but as my (2nd) dad got a stroke, and his place is available (he is away at relatives who can take care of him), I could get myself there. With a cleanup, it would be possible to even have place for the kids there, after a divorce.
I could also afford a good lawyer (actually, even my wife's parents support me, I have asked around), and get everything for myself. Kids, house, whatever.
But what if I'm wrong, and all the evidence I have is just false? What if I'm just insane already, and actually seeing things that are not there? What if she does not manipulate me, it is just my brain what's faulty?
I could just wait, and enjoy all the (faked?) good moments what we as a family share, and protecting our little, smart, starry eyed, clean and innocent girls from the painful and harsh reality, They both are way too smart for their own age. The smaller is even more, almost like a grownup. They both are also incredibly caring. It feels just wrong to break them because my life feels to be ruined 99% of the time...
P.S: In case, don't worry, I won't harm myself. My (biological) father did, and I know that a father is best alive. I also have 3 different help line numbers on my phone.
EDIT: Also, she didn't make it a secret that who these people are. I know about them, who they are, etc. Also, now there is a bit of an issue: nr 2 is jealous of nr 3, and stalks him online. Now what? (This is not just manipulation, I heard her talk when she didn't think I was around.)
UPDATE: As the kids were at my MIL for the weekend, I took the chance to have a chat with her parents. Independent of each other encouraged me to take the control of the finances, and both told me, separately to not worry, they know their daughter and are prepared to handle the shitstorm coming, including taking care of the kids until the smoke clears... To illustrate the relation between them: her father will have his birthday next week - she didn't prepare a thing for him. I was the one who got him a small present... (Her father is not flawless, but sure did provide for his family... Including buying her daughter a flat of her own at the beginning of our relationship.)
UPDATE still for yesterday evening (11.15): I couldn't help but notice a small mark on the right side of her neck when she finally got home yesterday... She got angry and tried to joke it away, and told me it is just an acne. (She has acne, fights a lot with it, but well, during these years, I never saw one around where just a passionate kiss would exactly be...) Fast forward when we got to bed: she got angry and went on a tirade telling me to allow what she wants to do and not snoop around her and let her live her life, and she will sort out, and that she should not have made me aware about the stance between #2 and #3.
submitted by SavingMyDaughters to survivinginfidelity [link] [comments]


2020.11.12 00:19 ChonkyBeagle Live sex caught in camera

So I've been watching some streams on this game. At first I fell into the fun of it for sure. The game is pretty, the guys are cute and funny, the games are always hilarious. This game certainly deserved the popularity it got. I mean, anyone who hasn't really digested the whole game would think this game was made for infants, but in reality this game is just cute and innocent fun. Which is great imo, games these days are covered in needless violence, guns, sex, or other vices, but here comes fall guys with nothing but good ole' slap stick entertainment.
However, the lack of vices portrayed in this game really caught my attention... a little too much. I'm not sure why I started down this long, dark, and unforgiving, train of thought that I'm about to elaborate. I know there's a lot of negativity present in everyday life. So that could have influenced it. Furthermore, I don't think its appropriate of me to be so negative in a time in which positive vibes is so important.
Now I don't know how to start this so I'll just in the front door. I think we Fall Guys represents a dystopian society that we live in today. I know that sounds crazy. So please allow me to explain. Firstly, we must acknowledge that there's a lot wrong with how we are living today. We are saying its for our health and safety but it's still cruel that in many places on this planet it's frowned upon to literally show your face, some places still it's frowned upon to even go outside. The only people making money are the mega-rich, and the possibility of living a successful life is impossible. Which leads me to Fall Guys.
Fall Guys is a game where you play as a minion-type creature. For the most part, you are not unique at all. You and just like everyone else. You don't even get a unique name, you just get a number (ie. Fall Guy 4767). Sure, you can wear whatever you want, but at the end of the day, all that matters is that you're playing the games and you've been deemed as qualified to continue. Its an endless grind that makes you think that the only enemy are the other players. You don't blame the games, you don't blame how their set up, because "that's just how it is". Everything is colorful and cute to further reinforce that everything is fun and not at all the social slaver system that it actually is.
You face is covered too keep you looking like everyone else. And you don't talk, you just mumble. Because with a covered face you cannot have anything to say other than just screams of pain or audible ques of exhaustion. It's almost like its hinting to the facemask we see on everyone in day-to-day life. And like the minions, our voices are nothing but mumbles.
The games, sure they're colorful, but their purpose is so dark. The games we are forced to play don't do anything productive, the games are only met to make us turn against eachother. The games make us focus on the goal of winning rather than the goal of personal pursuit of happiness. No one is complaining about the game itself, we're just complaining about eachother. Even when we're put into teams, its by skin color, a color we don't get to choose, and then told to fight eachother. And have you ever though "who" is running these games? "who" is on the other side of those cameras that are watching us? "who" are we performing these feats of physical exhaustion for... and why? It's analogs to the super rich that rule over us today. All we're doing is entertaining them, all we're doing is distracting ourselves from a bigger understanding of life's purpose.
And what does it mean to be Qualified or Eliminated? Eliminated means you get pushed down and you fall to the bottom. All but one person in a match falls. That one person is awarded nothing but a credit to which he can express a slight amount of individuality. So at the end, everyone falls. No one rises. You fall and fall and fall and at no point do you ever rise. And you continue to fall just for a slight chance of expressing yourself. But even then, at no point do you become important. You're always a fall guy and there's nothing you can do about it.
Now why is this even important to say? I think it's super important I verbalize these concerns because we cannot let the ideology of fall guys become the norm. In many places around the world, it is the norm. So it's not like what I say is an impossible reality. You cannot argue that "its just a game", we're are influenced by games, just as we're influenced by propaganda or how we're influenced by popular culture (which this game is, according to twitch). I'm not saying that the developers of this game are up to no good, (even though this game was release the same time COVID-19 appeared), the developers are just making something that's relatable and fun. We should make sure we have a firm separation between the Fall Guys reality and the real one. And we should be more cautious than ever seeing how the two realities are pretty much identical.
submitted by ChonkyBeagle to copypasta [link] [comments]


2020.11.11 20:10 getyaisha "The root of all Evil" (Fiction)

I guess I should start this off by saying, I didn’t have a choice. But that wouldn’t be completely accurate, technically I could have rejected the offer and my life would have continued on the path it was on, but to be real with you I wasn’t doing great.
My life was a mess, I couldn’t keep a job. I was suffering from depression and anxiety. I was barley functioning as a human being, things were looking so dark at that point I thought about ending it all. I had just been released from yet another go nowhere job and was at home one evening when I got a phone call. I put out a lot of applications online at least 15 a day, so it wasn’t abnormal for unknown numbers to show up on my phone, but this wasn’t just any number. This call would be what got me where I am today, which is barricaded inside of a house with hostages, surrounded by U.S. marshals and S.W.A.T.
Let me explain, my name is Calvin Greer and I’ve had horrible luck my entire life. I guess you could say it started at birth, my father, the prize winning pig he was, had major and I mean major drug problems. I don’t mean in and out of jail typical asshole junkie dad shit here, this guy was robbing coke dealers and trading it for guns which brought him right back to his drug of choice “Money”. Now I know what you’re thinking, as addictions go having a money addiction aint that bad of a deal. That would be the case, if you knew what to do with the money, this genius was a gambler and lost it all putting himself so far in debt he could never get out. He owed hundreds of thousands to the type of people you don’t want to owe a dime.
They burnt our house down and took the insurance money but that didn’t even begin to cover what he owed. On top of that he’d wronged a lot of people over the years so the streets wanted him dead. Ultimately he left us stranded in a homeless shelter and vanished for a while.
My mother, god bless her, was a saint. She saved every penny and stacked every dime working herself ragged till we were able to get into an apartment of our own. She did the best with what we had and it worked for us, until it didn’t, times got hard hell years got hard but eventually things got better. There was only one problem, momma had an addiction to, no not drugs or alcohol, and before you go getting all perverted no it wasn’t sex. She was addicted to my dad, she loved him so much she would do whatever it took to find him, and that’s exactly what she did.
I was 10 when we found him, he had been shot and left for dead in Nevada, I’m pretty sure you can guess where. She saw his face on the news and we were there at the hospital the next day, flash forward 7 years and the old man just couldn’t help himself. Don’t get me wrong, he tried, he held down a job for 3 or 4 years before shit went crazy all over again.
This time was different, I’m still not completely sure what he did but suddenly we came into a lot of money. I mean millions, we had the big house on the hill, new cars, the newest clothes, if you could buy it we had it and it was amazing. I was 17 about to be 18 and had lived my whole life up to that point dirt poor. To be millionaires literally overnight was mind blowing. I didn’t know how to act so naturally I went a little wild. I won’t weigh you down with all that, but trust me it was awesome.
Exactly 4 years later there was a knock at the door, I don’t think anyone was ready for what was on the other side of it. I swear it felt like all the air had been sucked out of the room when it opened, there standing in the doorway was a little girl. She couldn’t have been more than 7 or 8 years old, she was wearing one of those old fashioned dresses that made her look like a living doll. Her skin was a weeping discolored mess of prune like flesh, her eyes were oversized protruding yellowish orbs that darted around the room looking at all of us one by one. As bad as all of that was, the thing that really freaked me out was her hair, it was done like one of those child beauty pageant contestants, something about that just disturbed the hell out of me.
Then she spoke, her voice was booming and somehow ear piercing at the same time, the sound of it sent waves of pain through my brain and brought me to my knees. ”Your obligation has not been fulfilled, the contract is void. Your blood is now indebted.” I watched my father being dragged across the room by things I couldn’t see, he screamed and fought as much as he could until he was floating in the air just a few feet from where that thing was standing in the doorway. She raised one hand and made a fist, my father’s body crumbled like a piece of paper. I could hear his bones snapping and crunching under the pressure and with one last flick of her wrist, it was over, his body exploded and coated the room with his blood. My mother died of a heart attack right there in the living room, suddenly I was alone and as I found out a few days later back to being dirt poor, not a penny to my name outside of whatever cash assets I had on hand or hidden away which wasn’t much.
My life took a downward spiral after that, therapy and medication left me in this weird funk that kept me out of focus kind of just stumbling through life. Getting through the next few years would be tough I bounced around for a while till I was able to land a job at the airport cleaning rental cars, from there I got an apartment but that didn’t last long. The company sold its contract and the new owners didn’t want any convicted felons working for them, oh the felony thing is one of those details I fast forwarded through, besides it’s a horrible story. In any case after that I was living in my car for a while until it got stolen one night while I was working through a temp service. There’s a few more ups and downs but I’m sure you get the point by now.
I’d hit rock bottom, there was an eviction notice on my door and no sign of a dime rolling my way to pay on a single thing. Then my phone rang, an almost familiar sounding voice snapped me out of my daze. “Hello Mr. Greer, we recently reviewed your application and would like to offer you a job.” After a brief conversation, I agreed to the terms of the contract and I was told someone would be here to pick me up the next morning.
I don’t think I slept a wink that night and by 6 a.m. someone was knocking at my door, opening it I was greeted by a short old man with a bulging pot belly and long grey hair. He looked me over and grunted to himself before gruffly asking, “Are you Calvin Greer?” once I assured him I was we were off.
The old man turned out to be a talker, he started chatting me up once we were on the road. “So uh, Cal if you don’t mind me asking, have you ever done one of these before?”
Judging by the lingering aroma of weed in the van I could tell this was going to be a fun ride and before I could respond he dug in his shirt pocket and pulled out thumb thick spliff that seemed to fog up the van as soon as he lit it. “The name’s Teddy by the way, you smoke?” he asked passing it to me, smiling to myself I grabbed it and took a hit. Holding it in for a few seconds, I noticed the taste was almost sweet, it coated my mouth with a citrus flavor that reminded me of grapefruit. Choking and exhaling I chuckled and passed it back, “Wow that’s good, but what do you mean, done one of these? I thought this was a job.”
Teddy laughed at me before taking another long pull, “Oh it’s a job alright, just not the kind you’re thinking of.” passing me the blunt he exhaled a cloud and chuckled, “I’ll tell you like I tell everyone who tries this, in the end no one wins, just take the money and shut the fuck up, it’s not worth it.”
I don’t know if was the weed or what but Teddy had a real odd way of talking a lot without saying much. Taking another good hit, glancing out the window for a second I realized we weren’t in the city any more, but there was no way we had come that far that fast, my head started spinning and suddenly I could hear Teddy’s voice telling me to wake up. Rubbing my eyes and sitting up I see Teddy standing outside the van about to open my door, “That shits not for beginners.” He chuckled pulling it open, “Probably should have warned you, but no harm no foul. Were here safe and sound, good luck bro, just remember what I told you and hopefully I’ll see you for the trip home.”
Getting out of the van I found myself looking at a nice little two story house, the walls were made brick that had been painted a deep green that nearly matched the surrounding area. There were six other houses on the street each identical in build but painted different colors, grey, yellow, red, blue, white and black, somehow the entire day had passed it was dark now and I could see lights on in all the houses. On the mailbox to my left I noticed my name on a white envelope taped to it, as Teddy honked his horn and drove away as I grabbed the envelope. Inside was a letter that read:
“Hello Mr. Greer, The house you see in front of you will be your home for the next 365 days. In this time you will be compensated 5,000 dollars weekly for the duration of the job. Food, clothing, and shelter are provided there will be scheduled events that take place weekly at first and becoming daily as time goes on, you are free to opt out at any point terminating the contract and forfeiting your compensation. That money will be divided by the remaining participants, you will have limited access to internet and cable television as well as the freedom to move around the area. You will not be allowed off the property until you either opt out or finish the job.”
The only other thing in the envelope was a pair of keys, walking up to the front door I noticed there was a number painted on the frame 70. Stepping inside my jaw dropped it was identical to the house my parents died in, slowly backing out into the yard I stood there staring at the house. There was no way this was happening, that house was at least three times this size and yet when I looked inside it was all there. I should have opted out right then, god knows I thought about it, but I would be going back to nothing, I needed that money. Patting my pockets for my cigarettes a found what was left of the blunt Teddy was smoking and a note with STFU written on it. I laughed and grabbed my smokes and realized I didn’t have a lighter, “Great” going back inside that house was a nightmare come true, when I closed the door I could have sworn for a split second the knob was covered in blood but as I glanced down at my palm there was nothing there. I could smell my mother’s perfume hanging in the air flashbacks of pool parties and wild nights on the town flooded my mind for a moment followed by that horrible sound I spent years trying to forget.
It was coming from behind me, the wet crunching of bone shattering, tearing through flesh and the wheezing gasps for air. Out of reflex I spun around to see an empty room, everything was gone, I wasn’t in that house any more, the floors were a dark polished wood now and the walls were a sandy tan, in the room to my right was a large leather sectional sofa positioned around a huge flat screen television. To my left another room that led to the kitchen. Upstairs was three bedrooms and a game room decked out with every video game I could think of and a few I’d never heard of, this place was fantastic, and when I found the bar I forgot all about the weird flashbacks and poured myself a drink. Looking around the place I found the closet in the master bed room filled with brand new clothes and shoes, all in my size. Walking around getting a feel for the house I kept looking for cameras, but I never found any, after an hour or so of looking through everything there was a knock at the door.
I didn’t say a word, as quietly as I could I made my way to the door just in time for whoever it was to knock again. Looking through the peephole I see a tall thin woman with medium length brown hair and glasses. “Who is it?!” I barked out still watching, she stepped back slightly surprised and smiled. “I’m Paula from the blue house, I saw you getting dropped off and thought I’d come say hello before the others show up.”
When I finally opened the door Paula smiled and held out her hand to shake, there was something odd about her and not in a cute quirky way either, something about the look in her eye was unsettling. Not trying to be rude, I shook her hand and invited her inside. She stepped through the doorway and paused looking around the house smiling to herself before speaking excitedly, “I knew it, all the houses are completely different. Looks like you got the best one, do you know anything about the job?”
Something about her made me laugh a little, “No, not really, I’m Calvin by the way.” She smiled still looking around until she spotted the bar, the smile vanished and she looked me straight in the eyes, “Can I please have a drink?” something about her sudden mood change felt genuine. “Sure help yourself.” Before I could finish talking she was headed for the bar. Picking through the bottles she raised up an untapped bottle of Makers mark and kissed it before peeling away the wax and pouring a cup. I watched her sniff the drink breathing it in for a second with her eyes closed before finally taking that first sip, “Holy shit, that’s so good. Oh my God I thought I’d have to go a whole year without it, thank you so much. I’ve been here a month now and no one has alcohol, if I were you I wouldn’t tell everyone about this, those guys will be here every day trying to leach off you until you run dry.” She smiled taking another sip, I hadn’t noticed till then that she was covered in tattoos from her neck to her knuckles and she was gorgeous.
“Uh look, Paula is it? Can you please tell me the hells going on here, what are we being paid to do exactly?” she took another sip then refilled her cup. Walking towards the door she paused and smiled at me again, “Live, not to be cryptic or anything but that’s what they want you to do as far as I can tell. Stay here for a year and they’ll pay you to do it. I’m not sure why, Fred from the black house says this is some sort of game, I’m not sure I believe that though. If you ask me I think it’s an experiment, who knows, who cares? In the end we all get a big fat check and its back to the real world.” Finishing of her drink she thanked me for it and left.
I spent the rest of the night smoking and playing video games until I fell asleep, when I woke up I could hear people talking and the sun was up. Getting up and going downstairs I could make out two voices coming from just outside the front door. A man and a woman were arguing back and forward about what they should have brought, shaking my head I didn’t bother asking who it was I just opened the door catching them both off guard. “Oh hello, I’m Christine and this is Glen were from the yellow house, you wouldn’t have happened to see our son Eli around here have you? He’s been snooping around this place since we got here and we didn’t want him surprising you.” I told them I hadn’t seen anyone except Paula and they both gave me an odd look then Glen leaned towards me and uttered under his breath, “People like her are dangerous, I’d watch it around her if I were you.” With that they walked away talking to one another. An hour later I stepped outside for some air and saw a big white van in the middle of the street, there was a speaker mounted to the top of it and almost as soon as I noticed it a voiced boomed out from it, “Today’s event will take place in 3 minutes, you must remain inside your homes for the next 72 hours, if you fail to do so you will be penalized, today’s event is worth 5 thousand dollars, good luck.” A timer started counting down over the speaker, I stood there watching the curtains being closed in every house, not knowing what was about to happen I rushed inside and watched through the window waiting to see what was about to happen. When the timer hit zero o was expecting some amazing spectacle but nothing happened at least not at first, eventually the air around me started to warm up, it was barely noticeable at first but after 45 minutes I was dripping sweat, after 2 hours I thought I might pass out it got so hot I could see heat waves in the air and just when I thought I couldn’t take it anymore there was a loud metallic clank and cold air came pouring through the vents.
This went on for the entire first day and by nightfall I was starting to regret doing this. The temperature finally stabilized at 70 degrees and stayed there for the rest of the night, around two in the morning I started to hear someone running through the house, I lay there in bed listening to whoever it was right up until I heard them racing up the stairs. I rolled out of bed and rushed into the hall and froze in place, there standing at the top of the stairs was that horrible thing I’d seen kill my parents, its sickly bulbous yellow eyes locked onto me as its mouth stretched open releasing a swarm of what I thought were fly’s at first till one of them landed on my arm and bit into me. It looked like a tiny person with wings and an oversized mouth, its skin or maybe scales, who knows, was a reflective greenish black and when I say those little fuckers pack a punch, the bite took a chunk of flesh the bastards were trying to eat me. I swatted one and then another and another but the hallway was filling up with them I turned and bolted back into my room slamming the door shut then jamming everything I could get my hands on in the cracks to keep them out, that worked for a few seconds then they started coming through the vents. Rushing to the restroom I closed myself inside and started filling the tub with water while I franticly searched for anything I could use to swat them away. I could hear them buzzing outside the door the sound was so loud there had to be thousands of them, spotting a straw on the floor I remembered an old cartoon and prayed it worked as I scooped it up and dove in the tub submerging myself completely under water and breathing through the straw.
The door burst open and those things blotted out the light, it was suddenly pitch black in there but the straw was working, after a few minutes they fluttered away and I sat up relieved. Gasping and wiping water out of my eyes I heard the worst sound I think I’ve ever heard in my life, a girlish giggle coming from the doorway. Slowly turning I saw her, that same horrible little wrinkled wretch of a creature grinning at me, her oversized mouth filled with protruding half rotted teeth. She lunged at me in the blink of an eye and I jolted back slamming the back of my head into the wall and slipping in the tub, the second I got my balance she was gone. I sat there with the back of my head stinging fully clothed sitting in a tub of water, no sign of the bugs or the girl. Once I had on some dry clothes and was sure the house was empty tried to get something to eat, in the hall leading to the stairs there’s a floor to ceiling mirror I hadn’t paid much attention to until I walked passed it.
I don’t know how to explain it but there was something wrong with my reflection, tiny differences, like the scar on my cheek wasn’t there and my hair seemed darker but I wrote it off and headed for the kitchen. I stood there looking through the fridge and came up with a sandwich and a cold beer then sat down to watch a movie, about half way through I started to hear a tapping sound coming from the window. As long as it wasn’t that girl I thought I could deal with it, I was so wrong. Yanking back the curtain revealed something I wish I could erase from my brain, what I can only describe as a shaved ape was pressing its greasy, splotchy pink naked body against the glass and that tapping sound I mentioned, let’s just say you don’t want to know.
Upon realizing it had been spotted, this horrendous looking freak let out a pig like squeal and detached itself from the glass leaving an ogre shaped wet spot behind. It stood there staring in at me, it didn’t seem to have a neck and its eyes were these big black orbs that were so far apart they were nearly on the sides of its head, its mouth if you could call it that was abnormally wide and drooped in the corners releasing a river of what I hoped was just spit. The rest of its body looked like it was made of chicken skin, it hobbled around making that pig noise for a few seconds before it shambled off vanishing into the woods.
“Jesus Christ, what was that, please tell me it wasn’t doing what I think it was doing.” I said out loud to myself shaking my head, I didn’t look out of a window for the rest of the night. The next morning rolled in and I couldn’t have been happier, walking down the stairs I was hit by a smell that instantly made me gag, the only thing I could compare it to was, a septic tank stuffed with road kill. The stench was so thick I swear I tasted it, looking around the house was clean, I searched for close to an hour and couldn’t find where it was coming from. The smell was so bad it killed my appetite so I just sat there on the couch covering my nose till it finally went away. There was no rule against opening a window for air but the second I did, I regretted it, an ear piercing alarm sounded and every light in the house started flashing until I closed it. I did my best to move on with my day watching movies and playing games occasionally cleaning up just to pass the time, then I caught something moving out of the corner of my eye. At first glance I thought it was a rat, I would catch glimpses of them from time to time throughout the day but never got a good look at one till I went to the restroom.
I was standing there doing my business when I heard bubbling coming from the toilet, glancing down I saw a pair of eyes looking up at me from the drain. I was midstream there was no stopping now so I didn’t, I almost laughed at it till it came flying out of the toilet chomping at a needless to say sensitive area. Now I don’t know about you guys, but having some weird toilet goblin attacking my junk wasn’t high on my list of life goals, I pissed all over the place trying to get back and when that thing landed on the floor in front of me I nearly lost it. The creature didn’t look anything like a rat, it was a lot closer to a deformed really hairy spider with the biggest fangs I’d ever seen in my life. It made this clicking sound that made my eyes water and it reeked of that foul stink that had flooded the house earlier in the day.
It moved incredibly fast, crossing the floor between us in seconds I did the only thing I could think of and kicked it as hard as I could sending it flying through the air and splattering against the wall. Before I could celebrate my small victory a searing pain surged through my foot. The same foot I kicked the thing with was now covered in tiny brown and black quills that were pulsing pumping some sort of toxin into me. “Holy shit!” I screamed as the pain intensified, without thinking I snatched out as many of the quills as I could only to have a few of them lodge themselves into my fingers and palm, it was an insane situation that was about to get a lot worse. The restroom walls started to ripple like waves across a pond as they shifted between a calming white to a neon green then melted away. I could feel the inside of my skull rubbing against my brain, my eyes felt itchy and dry while my tongue seemed to swell causing me to drool uncontrollably. I couldn’t feel my legs but I could feel myself walking or maybe floating through the house, an overwhelming wave of panic crashed into me when I saw the couch turn into Cerberus and come racing towards me all three heads snarling and snapping at the air as my legs carried me up the stairs. I could hear it coming but my body stopped in front of the mirror, I watched in complete terror as my own reflection tore itself apart devouring itself only to be regurgitated and repeat the process. I felt bile rush up the back of my throat and my stomach cramped as I heaved spewing a wiggling mass of snakelike creatures with human faces that cried out “We’re free!” as they splattered on the floor and quickly began to slither away.
I tried to scream but all that came out was a garbled mash up of words that made no sense, the intense growling got closer and vibrated through me, my body moved faster than I thought possible nearly giving me whiplash as it raced down the hall and into my room slamming the door closed behind me. I could see myself bracing against the door but it was almost as if I was outside of my own body watching this happen to someone else. The door quaked and the wall shook from the impact of the hellhound slamming into it, just as the wood splintered and exploded sending me flying across the room everything stopped. I was hanging in mid-air seconds from slamming into the wall, I could hear the ocean or at least that’s what I thought it was, shifting my attention to the wall I saw it rippling just like in the restroom only it wasn’t changing to a neon green. Instead it had a reflective surface and the instant I locked eyes with myself in it time went back to normal and splashed through the wall winding up downstairs on the sofa in front of the T.V.
For a split second I thought it had all been in my head, right up until I saw one of those toilet spider goblin things watching me from the hallway. It scrambled away making that stupid irritating clicking sound as I tried to get up off the sofa. Now any sane person probably would have called it quits after all that but I had nothing to lose, without this job I was homeless. The lingering pain in my foot stuck around for most of the day, things didn’t pick back up until late in the afternoon. I was lighting a cigarette on the stove, when I saw something that shouldn’t be there, it was a door, I had been over every inch of the house and that door wasn’t there before that moment. I may be a lot of things, but stupid isn’t one of them, I didn’t care what was behind that door and I wasn’t going to find out, I got my smoke lit then turned off the burner and limped back to the living room and turned on the television. There were no news stations no local broadcasts from what I could tell there were only movie channels but while I was searching for something to veg out on I noticed an aux channel and decided to check it.
It was a live feed from the yellow house, I could clearly see Glen sitting at the kitchen table talking to a young boy who I figured had to be Eli. There was no sound but the conversation looked intense, Glen was banging his hand on the table and judging his movements I’d say he was probably yelling. The boy didn’t look as if he were paying attention to anything he was talking about and after a few minutes he threw up his hands and stormed out. Christine walked in a few seconds later and the camera switched to Eli who was in his room searching for something. After a quick search he pulled something from under the bed, his back was to the camera so I couldn’t get a look at what he was doing but he turned and looked directly into the camera and held up a white sheet of paper with “Help me” written on it. The feed switched again back to the kitchen but Christine and Glen weren’t there, the feed started switching between rooms literally looking for them until they were spotted in the main room. They were both kneeling in front of a man I hadn’t seen before, he was short and thin with a bald head for some reason I couldn’t see his face, everything else was clear and visible on the screen but when I tried to focus on him it almost looked like he didn’t have a face, just a blank surface with two black dots for eyes. He handed Christine a knife then motioned to Glen, she rose to her feet and stood there looking down at him, I almost couldn’t watch what happened next. Glen tilted his head back and she carved something into his forehead then when she was finished she handed the blade to him and he repeated the process on her. The screen flickered and the man was gone, they both flew into a rage and started wrecking the room, the camera switched back to Eli’s room, he’d barricaded himself in and was trying to get the window open. I watched him trying everything he could think of to shatter the glass but it wouldn’t break, in a matter of seconds his parents were banging on his door. It didn’t take long to force their way in, Christine was the first one in, she rushed him, Eli did everything he could to dodge her but when Glen got involved there was nothing he could do.
Glen pinned him to the ground while Christine stabbed him over and over, I thought that would be the end of it, but it wasn’t. I watched in total disbelief as they tore their only child apart and ate him, when they were done they stripped out of their clothes and had sex in his shredded remains. The feed stopped there, I didn’t know what to do, I paced around contemplating opting out then I remembered the phone in the kitchen. It was one of those old-school rotary phones but there was only one number on it 7. Picking it up and dialing I stood there waiting, it seemed to take forever but eventually someone responded.
“Hello Mr. Greer, how may we assist you?” for a second I didn’t know what to say, my mind went blank and when the voice called out again I snapped out of it. “Something just happened at the yellow house, you need to get someone over there right now!” there was a long pause and I could hear typing over the phone. After a second the voice spoke again, “We have noted your participation, thank you for reporting. Can we help you with anything else?”
“Help me with anything else, are you listening to me, I just watched those people kill their son! You need to send someone right now!” there was another long pause before the voice responded. “We are aware of the situation Mr. Greer, thank you for your concern, have a nice evening.” The line went dead and I was left with this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach, hanging it up I walked to the bar and poured a drink. Nothing happened that night, well almost nothing, around midnight I could have sworn I saw my reflection watching me from the bathroom mirror. It was only for a split second but I know what I saw, the next morning was quiet I avoided the television and played video games all day hoping I could just make it through. No such luck, I heard a crash from downstairs dropping the controller I jolted to my feet and rushed to get a look. I moved slowly listening for any signs of someone in the house, when I got to the kitchen I found the mystery door open and the fridge had been raided. I grabbed the biggest knife I could find and started searching the house again but before I did that I shut that door and moved the table in front of it. I looked everywhere I could think of and came up empty, walking back up the stairs I heard another crash from the kitchen followed by a low grunting, I spun around in time to see that neck less, naked shaved ape, frog man looking fucker come charging out through the hall.
It stopped at the bottom of the stairs making that gut churning grunting sound while licking its lips and staring at me, the first thought through my mind was this thing was about to eat me, then it did something that let me know its plans were so much worse. It uh well, it started humping the air and grunting as its junk scraped the floor leaving a snail trail. I wanted to puke but I kept it down and got up the stairs as quickly as I could, the grunting turned to a high pitched squeal and it came thundering up after me, as I raced passed the mirror I felt a pair of hands grab me and literally snatch me off my feet. A freezing cold shockwave of pain rolled through my body and my tongue went numb, I couldn’t see for a moment but I had to get up that thing would be on me if I didn’t. Staggering and stumbling, I got to my feet just as my vision cleared, a loud thump from behind me made flinch and I turned to see that creature pressing itself against the glass.
“Where am I?” as I uttered those words they echoed and amplified till they were so loud it gave me a splitting headache, when the echo finally faded I realized I was still in the same house but everything was opposite, I’d gone through the mirror. It’s not as cool as it sounds, its actually pretty freaking horrible if you ask me, the mirror doesn’t reflect the whole house, so I was trapped in this small section of hallway with empty unending darkness to either side of me and I wasn’t alone. It started as whispers echoing in from somewhere out there in the pitch black, then it was a shadow that would pass through the hall at high speed knocking me down every single time. Then it showed itself, I half way expected to see a mirror version of myself and I honestly would’ve preferred that to what I saw, I don’t know if any of you are comic book fans but it looked a lot like the “Silver surfer” without a face, its body was constantly changing. One second it would be the size of a child the next an adult shifting between male and female the entire time, it didn’t speak as much as put words in my head it only said two words “Be Still” then it was gone, I can’t begin to tell you how long I was standing there but eventually the creature left and the mirror thing came back to throw me back through the reflection. When I hit the ground on the other side I didn’t waste a second thinking about it I rushed down to the kitchen, found a hammer and nails then made sure the mystery door would never open again.
When the 72 hours were finally over the kitchen phone rang and I was told I could leave the house now. The first thing I did was step out the front door and breathe as deeply as my lungs would allow. I couldn’t help but stare at the yellow house waiting for Christine and Glen to step outside, but they never did. After a few minutes I saw Paula headed towards me with a huge smile on her face, “Hey Cal how was your first event, anything good happen?” I didn’t know what to say, shaking my head and chuckling to myself I looked around the street, “Did you see what Christine and Glen did to Eli?” Paula stepped back and gave me an odd look, “No, how would I have seen that, what are you talking about?”
I told her all about what I’d seen on the aux channel and she didn’t believe me, I thought she would change her mind if I showed her the channel but I’d forgotten the feed went dead after so when I tried to show her it was just a static filled screen with aux in the top right corner. After that I didn’t want to tell her about everything else that happened, it would just make me look insane. She smiled at me and touched my shoulder, “Look Cal, I know the first few days here are kind of weird but you should really try to get some rest, staying up all night can’t be a good for you.” She gave me that smile one last time and headed out, I didn’t think about it until she’d left but how did she know I had been staying up all night? Had she known all along about the channel? Was she watching me? Paranoia is a hell of a thing, I spent the rest of the day looking for cameras, maybe I had missed them the first time around but after a thorough search I didn’t find a single thing.
There wasn’t another event for days, then on a Thursday morning the white van was back. The speaker crackled to life and the announcement was made, “For the next 168 hours you are to stay inside your homes this event begins in 5 minutes. This will be a group event, will the white and blue sectors please report to the green sector. The black and grey sectors are to report to the red sector and the yellow sector is in isolation. You now have 4 minutes, this event will be triple pay for the week phones will be disabled and there will be one food delivery mid-week good luck.”
As soon as the announcement was over there was a knock at the door, while I wasn’t looking forward to another event, I was more than happy to have people with me at least I wouldn’t have to go through it alone. Opening the door I saw Paula standing there with a tall guy that looked like a Duck dynasty reject, he smiled a big goofy smile and extended his hand. “The names Jack, looks like we’re gonna be roomies for a while, I claim the sofa.” I could see Paula rolling her eyes as Jack let go of my hand and found his way over to the sofa area, she smiled and gave me a hug, “Don’t mind him, he’s an idiot.” She whispered in my ear stepping passed me rushing upstairs to find a bedroom.
Jack called out to me as soon as the door slammed shut, “Hey green guy, where’s the toilet, I gotta take a mean one.” I looked over to see him at the bar pouring himself a scotch and looking around the room, when I told him where it was he took his drink and hurried off, a few seconds later Paula came back downstairs with a big smile on her face.
“Jesus Cal, who’d you have to screw to get this house, the blue sector’s a dump compared to this place.” As she walked passed me headed for the kitchen I couldn’t help but notice something was different about her, she wasn’t thin like before, somehow in a week she’d become curvaceous in all the right places making it hard to keep my eyes off her. Once she’d disappeared around the corner Jack’s voice startled me out of my gaze, “So, what’s the issue here Greenie, what’s wrong with this place?”
Turning to face him I spotted him back at the bar refilling his drink, before I could respond Paula stepped up behind me and whispered in my ear, “Have a drink with me.” Jack looked at the two of us then smirked and took a seat on the couch.
While the timer counted down the final seconds before the event, I watched her pouring our drinks, as she handed mine to me Jack stood up and raised his glass, “Here’s to you Greenie, shit’s about to get weird.”
submitted by getyaisha to CreepsMcPasta [link] [comments]


2020.11.11 20:06 getyaisha "The Root of all Evil." (Fiction)

I guess I should start this off by saying, I didn’t have a choice. But that wouldn’t be completely accurate, technically I could have rejected the offer and my life would have continued on the path it was on, but to be real with you I wasn’t doing great.
My life was a mess, I couldn’t keep a job. I was suffering from depression and anxiety. I was barley functioning as a human being, things were looking so dark at that point I thought about ending it all. I had just been released from yet another go nowhere job and was at home one evening when I got a phone call. I put out a lot of applications online at least 15 a day, so it wasn’t abnormal for unknown numbers to show up on my phone, but this wasn’t just any number. This call would be what got me where I am today, which is barricaded inside of a house with hostages, surrounded by U.S. marshals and S.W.A.T.
Let me explain, my name is Calvin Greer and I’ve had horrible luck my entire life. I guess you could say it started at birth, my father, the prize winning pig he was, had major and I mean major drug problems. I don’t mean in and out of jail typical asshole junkie dad shit here, this guy was robbing coke dealers and trading it for guns which brought him right back to his drug of choice “Money”. Now I know what you’re thinking, as addictions go having a money addiction aint that bad of a deal. That would be the case, if you knew what to do with the money, this genius was a gambler and lost it all putting himself so far in debt he could never get out. He owed hundreds of thousands to the type of people you don’t want to owe a dime.
They burnt our house down and took the insurance money but that didn’t even begin to cover what he owed. On top of that he’d wronged a lot of people over the years so the streets wanted him dead. Ultimately he left us stranded in a homeless shelter and vanished for a while.
My mother, god bless her, was a saint. She saved every penny and stacked every dime working herself ragged till we were able to get into an apartment of our own. She did the best with what we had and it worked for us, until it didn’t, times got hard hell years got hard but eventually things got better. There was only one problem, momma had an addiction to, no not drugs or alcohol, and before you go getting all perverted no it wasn’t sex. She was addicted to my dad, she loved him so much she would do whatever it took to find him, and that’s exactly what she did.
I was 10 when we found him, he had been shot and left for dead in Nevada, I’m pretty sure you can guess where. She saw his face on the news and we were there at the hospital the next day, flash forward 7 years and the old man just couldn’t help himself. Don’t get me wrong, he tried, he held down a job for 3 or 4 years before shit went crazy all over again.
This time was different, I’m still not completely sure what he did but suddenly we came into a lot of money. I mean millions, we had the big house on the hill, new cars, the newest clothes, if you could buy it we had it and it was amazing. I was 17 about to be 18 and had lived my whole life up to that point dirt poor. To be millionaires literally overnight was mind blowing. I didn’t know how to act so naturally I went a little wild. I won’t weigh you down with all that, but trust me it was awesome.
Exactly 4 years later there was a knock at the door, I don’t think anyone was ready for what was on the other side of it. I swear it felt like all the air had been sucked out of the room when it opened, there standing in the doorway was a little girl. She couldn’t have been more than 7 or 8 years old, she was wearing one of those old fashioned dresses that made her look like a living doll. Her skin was a weeping discolored mess of prune like flesh, her eyes were oversized protruding yellowish orbs that darted around the room looking at all of us one by one. As bad as all of that was, the thing that really freaked me out was her hair, it was done like one of those child beauty pageant contestants, something about that just disturbed the hell out of me.
Then she spoke, her voice was booming and somehow ear piercing at the same time, the sound of it sent waves of pain through my brain and brought me to my knees. ”Your obligation has not been fulfilled, the contract is void. Your blood is now indebted.” I watched my father being dragged across the room by things I couldn’t see, he screamed and fought as much as he could until he was floating in the air just a few feet from where that thing was standing in the doorway. She raised one hand and made a fist, my father’s body crumbled like a piece of paper. I could hear his bones snapping and crunching under the pressure and with one last flick of her wrist, it was over, his body exploded and coated the room with his blood. My mother died of a heart attack right there in the living room, suddenly I was alone and as I found out a few days later back to being dirt poor, not a penny to my name outside of whatever cash assets I had on hand or hidden away which wasn’t much.
My life took a downward spiral after that, therapy and medication left me in this weird funk that kept me out of focus kind of just stumbling through life. Getting through the next few years would be tough I bounced around for a while till I was able to land a job at the airport cleaning rental cars, from there I got an apartment but that didn’t last long. The company sold its contract and the new owners didn’t want any convicted felons working for them, oh the felony thing is one of those details I fast forwarded through, besides it’s a horrible story. In any case after that I was living in my car for a while until it got stolen one night while I was working through a temp service. There’s a few more ups and downs but I’m sure you get the point by now.
I’d hit rock bottom, there was an eviction notice on my door and no sign of a dime rolling my way to pay on a single thing. Then my phone rang, an almost familiar sounding voice snapped me out of my daze. “Hello Mr. Greer, we recently reviewed your application and would like to offer you a job.” After a brief conversation, I agreed to the terms of the contract and I was told someone would be here to pick me up the next morning.
I don’t think I slept a wink that night and by 6 a.m. someone was knocking at my door, opening it I was greeted by a short old man with a bulging pot belly and long grey hair. He looked me over and grunted to himself before gruffly asking, “Are you Calvin Greer?” once I assured him I was we were off.
The old man turned out to be a talker, he started chatting me up once we were on the road. “So uh, Cal if you don’t mind me asking, have you ever done one of these before?”
Judging by the lingering aroma of weed in the van I could tell this was going to be a fun ride and before I could respond he dug in his shirt pocket and pulled out thumb thick spliff that seemed to fog up the van as soon as he lit it. “The name’s Teddy by the way, you smoke?” he asked passing it to me, smiling to myself I grabbed it and took a hit. Holding it in for a few seconds, I noticed the taste was almost sweet, it coated my mouth with a citrus flavor that reminded me of grapefruit. Choking and exhaling I chuckled and passed it back, “Wow that’s good, but what do you mean, done one of these? I thought this was a job.”
Teddy laughed at me before taking another long pull, “Oh it’s a job alright, just not the kind you’re thinking of.” passing me the blunt he exhaled a cloud and chuckled, “I’ll tell you like I tell everyone who tries this, in the end no one wins, just take the money and shut the fuck up, it’s not worth it.”
I don’t know if was the weed or what but Teddy had a real odd way of talking a lot without saying much. Taking another good hit, glancing out the window for a second I realized we weren’t in the city any more, but there was no way we had come that far that fast, my head started spinning and suddenly I could hear Teddy’s voice telling me to wake up. Rubbing my eyes and sitting up I see Teddy standing outside the van about to open my door, “That shits not for beginners.” He chuckled pulling it open, “Probably should have warned you, but no harm no foul. Were here safe and sound, good luck bro, just remember what I told you and hopefully I’ll see you for the trip home.”
Getting out of the van I found myself looking at a nice little two story house, the walls were made brick that had been painted a deep green that nearly matched the surrounding area. There were six other houses on the street each identical in build but painted different colors, grey, yellow, red, blue, white and black, somehow the entire day had passed it was dark now and I could see lights on in all the houses. On the mailbox to my left I noticed my name on a white envelope taped to it, as Teddy honked his horn and drove away as I grabbed the envelope. Inside was a letter that read:
“Hello Mr. Greer, The house you see in front of you will be your home for the next 365 days. In this time you will be compensated 5,000 dollars weekly for the duration of the job. Food, clothing, and shelter are provided there will be scheduled events that take place weekly at first and becoming daily as time goes on, you are free to opt out at any point terminating the contract and forfeiting your compensation. That money will be divided by the remaining participants, you will have limited access to internet and cable television as well as the freedom to move around the area. You will not be allowed off the property until you either opt out or finish the job.”
The only other thing in the envelope was a pair of keys, walking up to the front door I noticed there was a number painted on the frame 70. Stepping inside my jaw dropped it was identical to the house my parents died in, slowly backing out into the yard I stood there staring at the house. There was no way this was happening, that house was at least three times this size and yet when I looked inside it was all there. I should have opted out right then, god knows I thought about it, but I would be going back to nothing, I needed that money. Patting my pockets for my cigarettes a found what was left of the blunt Teddy was smoking and a note with STFU written on it. I laughed and grabbed my smokes and realized I didn’t have a lighter, “Great” going back inside that house was a nightmare come true, when I closed the door I could have sworn for a split second the knob was covered in blood but as I glanced down at my palm there was nothing there. I could smell my mother’s perfume hanging in the air flashbacks of pool parties and wild nights on the town flooded my mind for a moment followed by that horrible sound I spent years trying to forget.
It was coming from behind me, the wet crunching of bone shattering, tearing through flesh and the wheezing gasps for air. Out of reflex I spun around to see an empty room, everything was gone, I wasn’t in that house any more, the floors were a dark polished wood now and the walls were a sandy tan, in the room to my right was a large leather sectional sofa positioned around a huge flat screen television. To my left another room that led to the kitchen. Upstairs was three bedrooms and a game room decked out with every video game I could think of and a few I’d never heard of, this place was fantastic, and when I found the bar I forgot all about the weird flashbacks and poured myself a drink. Looking around the place I found the closet in the master bed room filled with brand new clothes and shoes, all in my size. Walking around getting a feel for the house I kept looking for cameras, but I never found any, after an hour or so of looking through everything there was a knock at the door.
I didn’t say a word, as quietly as I could I made my way to the door just in time for whoever it was to knock again. Looking through the peephole I see a tall thin woman with medium length brown hair and glasses. “Who is it?!” I barked out still watching, she stepped back slightly surprised and smiled. “I’m Paula from the blue house, I saw you getting dropped off and thought I’d come say hello before the others show up.”
When I finally opened the door Paula smiled and held out her hand to shake, there was something odd about her and not in a cute quirky way either, something about the look in her eye was unsettling. Not trying to be rude, I shook her hand and invited her inside. She stepped through the doorway and paused looking around the house smiling to herself before speaking excitedly, “I knew it, all the houses are completely different. Looks like you got the best one, do you know anything about the job?”
Something about her made me laugh a little, “No, not really, I’m Calvin by the way.” She smiled still looking around until she spotted the bar, the smile vanished and she looked me straight in the eyes, “Can I please have a drink?” something about her sudden mood change felt genuine. “Sure help yourself.” Before I could finish talking she was headed for the bar. Picking through the bottles she raised up an untapped bottle of Makers mark and kissed it before peeling away the wax and pouring a cup. I watched her sniff the drink breathing it in for a second with her eyes closed before finally taking that first sip, “Holy shit, that’s so good. Oh my God I thought I’d have to go a whole year without it, thank you so much. I’ve been here a month now and no one has alcohol, if I were you I wouldn’t tell everyone about this, those guys will be here every day trying to leach off you until you run dry.” She smiled taking another sip, I hadn’t noticed till then that she was covered in tattoos from her neck to her knuckles and she was gorgeous.
“Uh look, Paula is it? Can you please tell me the hells going on here, what are we being paid to do exactly?” she took another sip then refilled her cup. Walking towards the door she paused and smiled at me again, “Live, not to be cryptic or anything but that’s what they want you to do as far as I can tell. Stay here for a year and they’ll pay you to do it. I’m not sure why, Fred from the black house says this is some sort of game, I’m not sure I believe that though. If you ask me I think it’s an experiment, who knows, who cares? In the end we all get a big fat check and its back to the real world.” Finishing of her drink she thanked me for it and left.
I spent the rest of the night smoking and playing video games until I fell asleep, when I woke up I could hear people talking and the sun was up. Getting up and going downstairs I could make out two voices coming from just outside the front door. A man and a woman were arguing back and forward about what they should have brought, shaking my head I didn’t bother asking who it was I just opened the door catching them both off guard. “Oh hello, I’m Christine and this is Glen were from the yellow house, you wouldn’t have happened to see our son Eli around here have you? He’s been snooping around this place since we got here and we didn’t want him surprising you.” I told them I hadn’t seen anyone except Paula and they both gave me an odd look then Glen leaned towards me and uttered under his breath, “People like her are dangerous, I’d watch it around her if I were you.” With that they walked away talking to one another. An hour later I stepped outside for some air and saw a big white van in the middle of the street, there was a speaker mounted to the top of it and almost as soon as I noticed it a voiced boomed out from it, “Today’s event will take place in 3 minutes, you must remain inside your homes for the next 72 hours, if you fail to do so you will be penalized, today’s event is worth 5 thousand dollars, good luck.” A timer started counting down over the speaker, I stood there watching the curtains being closed in every house, not knowing what was about to happen I rushed inside and watched through the window waiting to see what was about to happen. When the timer hit zero o was expecting some amazing spectacle but nothing happened at least not at first, eventually the air around me started to warm up, it was barely noticeable at first but after 45 minutes I was dripping sweat, after 2 hours I thought I might pass out it got so hot I could see heat waves in the air and just when I thought I couldn’t take it anymore there was a loud metallic clank and cold air came pouring through the vents.
This went on for the entire first day and by nightfall I was starting to regret doing this. The temperature finally stabilized at 70 degrees and stayed there for the rest of the night, around two in the morning I started to hear someone running through the house, I lay there in bed listening to whoever it was right up until I heard them racing up the stairs. I rolled out of bed and rushed into the hall and froze in place, there standing at the top of the stairs was that horrible thing I’d seen kill my parents, its sickly bulbous yellow eyes locked onto me as its mouth stretched open releasing a swarm of what I thought were fly’s at first till one of them landed on my arm and bit into me. It looked like a tiny person with wings and an oversized mouth, its skin or maybe scales, who knows, was a reflective greenish black and when I say those little fuckers pack a punch, the bite took a chunk of flesh the bastards were trying to eat me. I swatted one and then another and another but the hallway was filling up with them I turned and bolted back into my room slamming the door shut then jamming everything I could get my hands on in the cracks to keep them out, that worked for a few seconds then they started coming through the vents. Rushing to the restroom I closed myself inside and started filling the tub with water while I franticly searched for anything I could use to swat them away. I could hear them buzzing outside the door the sound was so loud there had to be thousands of them, spotting a straw on the floor I remembered an old cartoon and prayed it worked as I scooped it up and dove in the tub submerging myself completely under water and breathing through the straw.
The door burst open and those things blotted out the light, it was suddenly pitch black in there but the straw was working, after a few minutes they fluttered away and I sat up relieved. Gasping and wiping water out of my eyes I heard the worst sound I think I’ve ever heard in my life, a girlish giggle coming from the doorway. Slowly turning I saw her, that same horrible little wrinkled wretch of a creature grinning at me, her oversized mouth filled with protruding half rotted teeth. She lunged at me in the blink of an eye and I jolted back slamming the back of my head into the wall and slipping in the tub, the second I got my balance she was gone. I sat there with the back of my head stinging fully clothed sitting in a tub of water, no sign of the bugs or the girl. Once I had on some dry clothes and was sure the house was empty tried to get something to eat, in the hall leading to the stairs there’s a floor to ceiling mirror I hadn’t paid much attention to until I walked passed it.
I don’t know how to explain it but there was something wrong with my reflection, tiny differences, like the scar on my cheek wasn’t there and my hair seemed darker but I wrote it off and headed for the kitchen. I stood there looking through the fridge and came up with a sandwich and a cold beer then sat down to watch a movie, about half way through I started to hear a tapping sound coming from the window. As long as it wasn’t that girl I thought I could deal with it, I was so wrong. Yanking back the curtain revealed something I wish I could erase from my brain, what I can only describe as a shaved ape was pressing its greasy, splotchy pink naked body against the glass and that tapping sound I mentioned, let’s just say you don’t want to know.
Upon realizing it had been spotted, this horrendous looking freak let out a pig like squeal and detached itself from the glass leaving an ogre shaped wet spot behind. It stood there staring in at me, it didn’t seem to have a neck and its eyes were these big black orbs that were so far apart they were nearly on the sides of its head, its mouth if you could call it that was abnormally wide and drooped in the corners releasing a river of what I hoped was just spit. The rest of its body looked like it was made of chicken skin, it hobbled around making that pig noise for a few seconds before it shambled off vanishing into the woods.
“Jesus Christ, what was that, please tell me it wasn’t doing what I think it was doing.” I said out loud to myself shaking my head, I didn’t look out of a window for the rest of the night. The next morning rolled in and I couldn’t have been happier, walking down the stairs I was hit by a smell that instantly made me gag, the only thing I could compare it to was, a septic tank stuffed with road kill. The stench was so thick I swear I tasted it, looking around the house was clean, I searched for close to an hour and couldn’t find where it was coming from. The smell was so bad it killed my appetite so I just sat there on the couch covering my nose till it finally went away. There was no rule against opening a window for air but the second I did, I regretted it, an ear piercing alarm sounded and every light in the house started flashing until I closed it. I did my best to move on with my day watching movies and playing games occasionally cleaning up just to pass the time, then I caught something moving out of the corner of my eye. At first glance I thought it was a rat, I would catch glimpses of them from time to time throughout the day but never got a good look at one till I went to the restroom.
I was standing there doing my business when I heard bubbling coming from the toilet, glancing down I saw a pair of eyes looking up at me from the drain. I was midstream there was no stopping now so I didn’t, I almost laughed at it till it came flying out of the toilet chomping at a needless to say sensitive area. Now I don’t know about you guys, but having some weird toilet goblin attacking my junk wasn’t high on my list of life goals, I pissed all over the place trying to get back and when that thing landed on the floor in front of me I nearly lost it. The creature didn’t look anything like a rat, it was a lot closer to a deformed really hairy spider with the biggest fangs I’d ever seen in my life. It made this clicking sound that made my eyes water and it reeked of that foul stink that had flooded the house earlier in the day.
It moved incredibly fast, crossing the floor between us in seconds I did the only thing I could think of and kicked it as hard as I could sending it flying through the air and splattering against the wall. Before I could celebrate my small victory a searing pain surged through my foot. The same foot I kicked the thing with was now covered in tiny brown and black quills that were pulsing pumping some sort of toxin into me. “Holy shit!” I screamed as the pain intensified, without thinking I snatched out as many of the quills as I could only to have a few of them lodge themselves into my fingers and palm, it was an insane situation that was about to get a lot worse. The restroom walls started to ripple like waves across a pond as they shifted between a calming white to a neon green then melted away. I could feel the inside of my skull rubbing against my brain, my eyes felt itchy and dry while my tongue seemed to swell causing me to drool uncontrollably. I couldn’t feel my legs but I could feel myself walking or maybe floating through the house, an overwhelming wave of panic crashed into me when I saw the couch turn into Cerberus and come racing towards me all three heads snarling and snapping at the air as my legs carried me up the stairs. I could hear it coming but my body stopped in front of the mirror, I watched in complete terror as my own reflection tore itself apart devouring itself only to be regurgitated and repeat the process. I felt bile rush up the back of my throat and my stomach cramped as I heaved spewing a wiggling mass of snakelike creatures with human faces that cried out “We’re free!” as they splattered on the floor and quickly began to slither away.
I tried to scream but all that came out was a garbled mash up of words that made no sense, the intense growling got closer and vibrated through me, my body moved faster than I thought possible nearly giving me whiplash as it raced down the hall and into my room slamming the door closed behind me. I could see myself bracing against the door but it was almost as if I was outside of my own body watching this happen to someone else. The door quaked and the wall shook from the impact of the hellhound slamming into it, just as the wood splintered and exploded sending me flying across the room everything stopped. I was hanging in mid-air seconds from slamming into the wall, I could hear the ocean or at least that’s what I thought it was, shifting my attention to the wall I saw it rippling just like in the restroom only it wasn’t changing to a neon green. Instead it had a reflective surface and the instant I locked eyes with myself in it time went back to normal and I splashed through the wall winding up downstairs on the sofa in front of the T.V.
For a split second I thought it had all been in my head, right up until I saw one of those toilet spider goblin things watching me from the hallway. It scrambled away making that stupid irritating clicking sound as I tried to get up off the sofa. Now any sane person probably would have called it quits after all that but I had nothing to lose, without this job I was homeless. The lingering pain in my foot stuck around for most of the day, things didn’t pick back up until late in the afternoon. I was lighting a cigarette on the stove, when I saw something that shouldn’t be there, it was a door, I had been over every inch of the house and that door wasn’t there before that moment. I may be a lot of things, but stupid isn’t one of them, I didn’t care what was behind that door and I wasn’t going to find out, I got my smoke lit then turned off the burner and limped back to the living room and turned on the television. There were no news stations no local broadcasts from what I could tell there were only movie channels but while I was searching for something to veg out on I noticed an aux channel and decided to check it.
It was a live feed from the yellow house, I could clearly see Glen sitting at the kitchen table talking to a young boy who I figured had to be Eli. There was no sound but the conversation looked intense, Glen was banging his hand on the table and judging his movements I’d say he was probably yelling. The boy didn’t look as if he were paying attention to anything he was talking about and after a few minutes he threw up his hands and stormed out. Christine walked in a few seconds later and the camera switched to Eli who was in his room searching for something. After a quick search he pulled something from under the bed, his back was to the camera so I couldn’t get a look at what he was doing but he turned and looked directly into the camera and held up a white sheet of paper with “Help me” written on it. The feed switched again back to the kitchen but Christine and Glen weren’t there, the feed started switching between rooms literally looking for them until they were spotted in the main room. They were both kneeling in front of a man I hadn’t seen before, he was short and thin with a bald head for some reason I couldn’t see his face, everything else was clear and visible on the screen but when I tried to focus on him it almost looked like he didn’t have a face, just a blank surface with two black dots for eyes. He handed Christine a knife then motioned to Glen, she rose to her feet and stood there looking down at him, I almost couldn’t watch what happened next. Glen tilted his head back and she carved something into his forehead then when she was finished she handed the blade to him and he repeated the process on her. The screen flickered and the man was gone, they both flew into a rage and started wrecking the room, the camera switched back to Eli’s room, he’d barricaded himself in and was trying to get the window open. I watched him trying everything he could think of to shatter the glass but it wouldn’t break, in a matter of seconds his parents were banging on his door. It didn’t take long to force their way in, Christine was the first one in, she rushed him, Eli did everything he could to dodge her but when Glen got involved there was nothing he could do.
Glen pinned him to the ground while Christine stabbed him over and over, I thought that would be the end of it, but it wasn’t. I watched in total disbelief as they tore their only child apart and ate him, when they were done they stripped out of their clothes and had sex in his shredded remains. The feed stopped there, I didn’t know what to do, I paced around contemplating opting out then I remembered the phone in the kitchen. It was one of those old-school rotary phones but there was only one number on it 7. Picking it up and dialing I stood there waiting, it seemed to take forever but eventually someone responded.
“Hello Mr. Greer, how may we assist you?” for a second I didn’t know what to say, my mind went blank and when the voice called out again I snapped out of it. “Something just happened at the yellow house, you need to get someone over there right now!” there was a long pause and I could hear typing over the phone. After a second the voice spoke again, “We have noted your participation, thank you for reporting. Can we help you with anything else?”
“Help me with anything else, are you listening to me, I just watched those people kill their son! You need to send someone right now!” there was another long pause before the voice responded. “We are aware of the situation Mr. Greer, thank you for your concern, have a nice evening.” The line went dead and I was left with this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach, hanging it up I walked to the bar and poured a drink. Nothing happened that night, well almost nothing, around midnight I could have sworn I saw my reflection watching me from the bathroom mirror. It was only for a split second but I know what I saw, the next morning was quiet I avoided the television and played video games all day hoping I could just make it through. No such luck, I heard a crash from downstairs dropping the controller I jolted to my feet and rushed to get a look. I moved slowly listening for any signs of someone in the house, when I got to the kitchen I found the mystery door open and the fridge had been raided. I grabbed the biggest knife I could find and started searching the house again but before I did that I shut that door and moved the table in front of it. I looked everywhere I could think of and came up empty, walking back up the stairs I heard another crash from the kitchen followed by a low grunting, I spun around in time to see that neck less, naked shaved ape, frog man looking fucker come charging out through the hall.
It stopped at the bottom of the stairs making that gut churning grunting sound while licking its lips and staring at me, the first thought through my mind was this thing was about to eat me, then it did something that let me know its plans were so much worse. It uh well, it started humping the air and grunting as its junk scraped the floor leaving a snail trail. I wanted to puke but I kept it down and got up the stairs as quickly as I could, the grunting turned to a high pitched squeal and it came thundering up after me, as I raced passed the mirror I felt a pair of hands grab me and literally snatch me off my feet. A freezing cold shockwave of pain rolled through my body and my tongue went numb, I couldn’t see for a moment but I had to get up that thing would be on me if I didn’t. Staggering and stumbling, I got to my feet just as my vision cleared, a loud thump from behind me made flinch and I turned to see that creature pressing itself against the glass.
“Where am I?” as I uttered those words they echoed and amplified till they were so loud it gave me a splitting headache, when the echo finally faded I realized I was still in the same house but everything was opposite, I’d gone through the mirror. It’s not as cool as it sounds, its actually pretty freaking horrible if you ask me, the mirror doesn’t reflect the whole house, so I was trapped in this small section of hallway with empty unending darkness to either side of me and I wasn’t alone. It started as whispers echoing in from somewhere out there in the pitch black, then it was a shadow that would pass through the hall at high speed knocking me down every single time. Then it showed itself, I half way expected to see a mirror version of myself and I honestly would’ve preferred that to what I saw, I don’t know if any of you are comic book fans but it looked a lot like the “Silver surfer” without a face, its body was constantly changing. One second it would be the size of a child the next an adult shifting between male and female the entire time, it didn’t speak as much as put words in my head it only said two words “Be Still” then it was gone, I can’t begin to tell you how long I was standing there but eventually the creature left and the mirror thing came back to throw me back through the reflection. When I hit the ground on the other side I didn’t waste a second thinking about it I rushed down to the kitchen, found a hammer and nails then made sure the mystery door would never open again.
When the 72 hours were finally over the kitchen phone rang and I was told I could leave the house now. The first thing I did was step out the front door and breathe as deeply as my lungs would allow. I couldn’t help but stare at the yellow house waiting for Christine and Glen to step outside, but they never did. After a few minutes I saw Paula headed towards me with a huge smile on her face, “Hey Cal how was your first event, anything good happen?” I didn’t know what to say, shaking my head and chuckling to myself I looked around the street, “Did you see what Christine and Glen did to Eli?” Paula stepped back and gave me an odd look, “No, how would I have seen that, what are you talking about?”
I told her all about what I’d seen on the aux channel and she didn’t believe me, I thought she would change her mind if I showed her the channel but I’d forgotten the feed went dead after so when I tried to show her it was just a static filled screen with aux in the top right corner. After that I didn’t want to tell her about everything else that happened, it would just make me look insane. She smiled at me and touched my shoulder, “Look Cal, I know the first few days here are kind of weird but you should really try to get some rest, staying up all night can’t be a good for you.” She gave me that smile one last time and headed out, I didn’t think about it until she’d left but how did she know I had been staying up all night? Had she known all along about the channel? Was she watching me? Paranoia is a hell of a thing, I spent the rest of the day looking for cameras, maybe I had missed them the first time around but after a thorough search I didn’t find a single thing.
There wasn’t another event for days, then on a Thursday morning the white van was back. The speaker crackled to life and the announcement was made, “For the next 168 hours you are to stay inside your homes this event begins in 5 minutes. This will be a group event, will the white and blue sectors please report to the green sector. The black and grey sectors are to report to the red sector and the yellow sector is in isolation. You now have 4 minutes, this event will be triple pay for the week phones will be disabled and there will be one food delivery mid-week good luck.”
As soon as the announcement was over there was a knock at the door, while I wasn’t looking forward to another event, I was more than happy to have people with me at least I wouldn’t have to go through it alone. Opening the door I saw Paula standing there with a tall guy that looked like a Duck dynasty reject, he smiled a big goofy smile and extended his hand. “The names Jack, looks like we’re gonna be roomies for a while, I claim the sofa.” I could see Paula rolling her eyes as Jack let go of my hand and found his way over to the sofa area, she smiled and gave me a hug, “Don’t mind him, he’s an idiot.” She whispered in my ear stepping passed me rushing upstairs to find a bedroom.
Jack called out to me as soon as the door slammed shut, “Hey green guy, where’s the toilet, I gotta take a mean one.” I looked over to see him at the bar pouring himself a scotch and looking around the room, when I told him where it was he took his drink and hurried off, a few seconds later Paula came back downstairs with a big smile on her face.
“Jesus Cal, who’d you have to screw to get this house, the blue sector’s a dump compared to this place.” As she walked passed me headed for the kitchen I couldn’t help but notice something was different about her, she wasn’t thin like before, somehow in a week she’d become curvaceous in all the right places making it hard to keep my eyes off her. Once she’d disappeared around the corner Jack’s voice startled me out of my gaze, “So, what’s the issue here Greenie, what’s wrong with this place?”
Turning to face him I spotted him back at the bar refilling his drink, before I could respond Paula stepped up behind me and whispered in my ear, “Have a drink with me.” Jack looked at the two of us then smirked and took a seat on the couch.
While the timer counted down the final seconds before the event, I watched her pouring our drinks, as she handed mine to me Jack stood up and raised his glass, “Here’s to you Greenie, shit’s about to get weird.”
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2020.11.11 20:04 getyaisha Live sex caught in camera

I guess I should start this off by saying, I didn’t have a choice. But that wouldn’t be completely accurate, technically I could have rejected the offer and my life would have continued on the path it was on, but to be real with you I wasn’t doing great.
My life was a mess, I couldn’t keep a job. I was suffering from depression and anxiety. I was barley functioning as a human being, things were looking so dark at that point I thought about ending it all. I had just been released from yet another go nowhere job and was at home one evening when I got a phone call. I put out a lot of applications online at least 15 a day, so it wasn’t abnormal for unknown numbers to show up on my phone, but this wasn’t just any number. This call would be what got me where I am today, which is barricaded inside of a house with hostages, surrounded by U.S. marshals and S.W.A.T.
Let me explain, my name is Calvin Greer and I’ve had horrible luck my entire life. I guess you could say it started at birth, my father, the prize winning pig he was, had major and I mean major drug problems. I don’t mean in and out of jail typical asshole junkie dad shit here, this guy was robbing coke dealers and trading it for guns which brought him right back to his drug of choice “Money”. Now I know what you’re thinking, as addictions go having a money addiction aint that bad of a deal. That would be the case, if you knew what to do with the money, this genius was a gambler and lost it all putting himself so far in debt he could never get out. He owed hundreds of thousands to the type of people you don’t want to owe a dime.
They burnt our house down and took the insurance money but that didn’t even begin to cover what he owed. On top of that he’d wronged a lot of people over the years so the streets wanted him dead. Ultimately he left us stranded in a homeless shelter and vanished for a while.
My mother, god bless her, was a saint. She saved every penny and stacked every dime working herself ragged till we were able to get into an apartment of our own. She did the best with what we had and it worked for us, until it didn’t, times got hard hell years got hard but eventually things got better. There was only one problem, momma had an addiction to, no not drugs or alcohol, and before you go getting all perverted no it wasn’t sex. She was addicted to my dad, she loved him so much she would do whatever it took to find him, and that’s exactly what she did.
I was 10 when we found him, he had been shot and left for dead in Nevada, I’m pretty sure you can guess where. She saw his face on the news and we were there at the hospital the next day, flash forward 7 years and the old man just couldn’t help himself. Don’t get me wrong, he tried, he held down a job for 3 or 4 years before shit went crazy all over again.
This time was different, I’m still not completely sure what he did but suddenly we came into a lot of money. I mean millions, we had the big house on the hill, new cars, the newest clothes, if you could buy it we had it and it was amazing. I was 17 about to be 18 and had lived my whole life up to that point dirt poor. To be millionaires literally overnight was mind blowing. I didn’t know how to act so naturally I went a little wild. I won’t weigh you down with all that, but trust me it was awesome.
Exactly 4 years later there was a knock at the door, I don’t think anyone was ready for what was on the other side of it. I swear it felt like all the air had been sucked out of the room when it opened, there standing in the doorway was a little girl. She couldn’t have been more than 7 or 8 years old, she was wearing one of those old fashioned dresses that made her look like a living doll. Her skin was a weeping discolored mess of prune like flesh, her eyes were oversized protruding yellowish orbs that darted around the room looking at all of us one by one. As bad as all of that was, the thing that really freaked me out was her hair, it was done like one of those child beauty pageant contestants, something about that just disturbed the hell out of me.
Then she spoke, her voice was booming and somehow ear piercing at the same time, the sound of it sent waves of pain through my brain and brought me to my knees. ”Your obligation has not been fulfilled, the contract is void. Your blood is now indebted.” I watched my father being dragged across the room by things I couldn’t see, he screamed and fought as much as he could until he was floating in the air just a few feet from where that thing was standing in the doorway. She raised one hand and made a fist, my father’s body crumbled like a piece of paper. I could hear his bones snapping and crunching under the pressure and with one last flick of her wrist, it was over, his body exploded and coated the room with his blood. My mother died of a heart attack right there in the living room, suddenly I was alone and as I found out a few days later back to being dirt poor, not a penny to my name outside of whatever cash assets I had on hand or hidden away which wasn’t much.
My life took a downward spiral after that, therapy and medication left me in this weird funk that kept me out of focus kind of just stumbling through life. Getting through the next few years would be tough I bounced around for a while till I was able to land a job at the airport cleaning rental cars, from there I got an apartment but that didn’t last long. The company sold its contract and the new owners didn’t want any convicted felons working for them, oh the felony thing is one of those details I fast forwarded through, besides it’s a horrible story. In any case after that I was living in my car for a while until it got stolen one night while I was working through a temp service. There’s a few more ups and downs but I’m sure you get the point by now.
I’d hit rock bottom, there was an eviction notice on my door and no sign of a dime rolling my way to pay on a single thing. Then my phone rang, an almost familiar sounding voice snapped me out of my daze. “Hello Mr. Greer, we recently reviewed your application and would like to offer you a job.” After a brief conversation, I agreed to the terms of the contract and I was told someone would be here to pick me up the next morning.
I don’t think I slept a wink that night and by 6 a.m. someone was knocking at my door, opening it I was greeted by a short old man with a bulging pot belly and long grey hair. He looked me over and grunted to himself before gruffly asking, “Are you Calvin Greer?” once I assured him I was we were off.
The old man turned out to be a talker, he started chatting me up once we were on the road. “So uh, Cal if you don’t mind me asking, have you ever done one of these before?”
Judging by the lingering aroma of weed in the van I could tell this was going to be a fun ride and before I could respond he dug in his shirt pocket and pulled out thumb thick spliff that seemed to fog up the van as soon as he lit it. “The name’s Teddy by the way, you smoke?” he asked passing it to me, smiling to myself I grabbed it and took a hit. Holding it in for a few seconds, I noticed the taste was almost sweet, it coated my mouth with a citrus flavor that reminded me of grapefruit. Choking and exhaling I chuckled and passed it back, “Wow that’s good, but what do you mean, done one of these? I thought this was a job.”
Teddy laughed at me before taking another long pull, “Oh it’s a job alright, just not the kind you’re thinking of.” passing me the blunt he exhaled a cloud and chuckled, “I’ll tell you like I tell everyone who tries this, in the end no one wins, just take the money and shut the fuck up, it’s not worth it.”
I don’t know if was the weed or what but Teddy had a real odd way of talking a lot without saying much. Taking another good hit, glancing out the window for a second I realized we weren’t in the city any more, but there was no way we had come that far that fast, my head started spinning and suddenly I could hear Teddy’s voice telling me to wake up. Rubbing my eyes and sitting up I see Teddy standing outside the van about to open my door, “That shits not for beginners.” He chuckled pulling it open, “Probably should have warned you, but no harm no foul. Were here safe and sound, good luck bro, just remember what I told you and hopefully I’ll see you for the trip home.”
Getting out of the van I found myself looking at a nice little two story house, the walls were made brick that had been painted a deep green that nearly matched the surrounding area. There were six other houses on the street each identical in build but painted different colors, grey, yellow, red, blue, white and black, somehow the entire day had passed it was dark now and I could see lights on in all the houses. On the mailbox to my left I noticed my name on a white envelope taped to it, Teddy honked his horn and drove away as I grabbed the envelope. Inside was a letter that read:
“Hello Mr. Greer, The house you see in front of you will be your home for the next 365 days. In this time you will be compensated 5,000 dollars weekly for the duration of the job. Food, clothing, and shelter are provided there will be scheduled events that take place weekly at first and becoming daily as time goes on, you are free to opt out at any point terminating the contract and forfeiting your compensation. That money will be divided by the remaining participants, you will have limited access to internet and cable television as well as the freedom to move around the area. You will not be allowed off the property until you either opt out or finish the job.”
The only other thing in the envelope was a pair of keys, walking up to the front door I noticed there was a number painted on the frame 70. Stepping inside my jaw dropped it was identical to the house my parents died in, slowly backing out into the yard I stood there staring at the house. There was no way this was happening, that house was at least three times this size and yet when I looked inside it was all there. I should have opted out right then, god knows I thought about it, but I would be going back to nothing, I needed that money. Patting my pockets for my cigarettes a found what was left of the blunt Teddy was smoking and a note with STFU written on it. I laughed and grabbed my smokes and realized I didn’t have a lighter, “Great” going back inside that house was a nightmare come true, when I closed the door I could have sworn for a split second the knob was covered in blood but as I glanced down at my palm there was nothing there. I could smell my mother’s perfume hanging in the air flashbacks of pool parties and wild nights on the town flooded my mind for a moment followed by that horrible sound I spent years trying to forget.
It was coming from behind me, the wet crunching of bone shattering, tearing through flesh and the wheezing gasps for air. Out of reflex I spun around to see an empty room, everything was gone, I wasn’t in that house any more, the floors were a dark polished wood now and the walls were a sandy tan, in the room to my right was a large leather sectional sofa positioned around a huge flat screen television. To my left another room that led to the kitchen. Upstairs was three bedrooms and a game room decked out with every video game I could think of and a few I’d never heard of, this place was fantastic, and when I found the bar I forgot all about the weird flashbacks and poured myself a drink. Looking around the place I found the closet in the master bed room filled with brand new clothes and shoes, all in my size. Walking around getting a feel for the house I kept looking for cameras, but I never found any, after an hour or so of looking through everything there was a knock at the door.
I didn’t say a word, as quietly as I could I made my way to the door just in time for whoever it was to knock again. Looking through the peephole I see a tall thin woman with medium length brown hair and glasses. “Who is it?!” I barked out still watching, she stepped back slightly surprised and smiled. “I’m Paula from the blue house, I saw you getting dropped off and thought I’d come say hello before the others show up.”
When I finally opened the door Paula smiled and held out her hand to shake, there was something odd about her and not in a cute quirky way either, something about the look in her eye was unsettling. Not trying to be rude, I shook her hand and invited her inside. She stepped through the doorway and paused looking around the house smiling to herself before speaking excitedly, “I knew it, all the houses are completely different. Looks like you got the best one, do you know anything about the job?”
Something about her made me laugh a little, “No, not really, I’m Calvin by the way.” She smiled still looking around until she spotted the bar, the smile vanished and she looked me straight in the eyes, “Can I please have a drink?” something about her sudden mood change felt genuine. “Sure help yourself.” Before I could finish talking she was headed for the bar. Picking through the bottles she raised up an untapped bottle of Makers mark and kissed it before peeling away the wax and pouring a cup. I watched her sniff the drink breathing it in for a second with her eyes closed before finally taking that first sip, “Holy shit, that’s so good. Oh my God I thought I’d have to go a whole year without it, thank you so much. I’ve been here a month now and no one has alcohol, if I were you I wouldn’t tell everyone about this, those guys will be here every day trying to leach off you until you run dry.” She smiled taking another sip, I hadn’t noticed till then that she was covered in tattoos from her neck to her knuckles and she was gorgeous.
“Uh look, Paula is it? Can you please tell me the hells going on here, what are we being paid to do exactly?” she took another sip then refilled her cup. Walking towards the door she paused and smiled at me again, “Live, not to be cryptic or anything but that’s what they want you to do as far as I can tell. Stay here for a year and they’ll pay you to do it. I’m not sure why, Fred from the black house says this is some sort of game, I’m not sure I believe that though. If you ask me I think it’s an experiment, who knows, who cares? In the end we all get a big fat check and its back to the real world.” Finishing of her drink she thanked me for it and left.
I spent the rest of the night smoking and playing video games until I fell asleep, when I woke up I could hear people talking and the sun was up. Getting up and going downstairs I could make out two voices coming from just outside the front door. A man and a woman were arguing back and forward about what they should have brought, shaking my head I didn’t bother asking who it was I just opened the door catching them both off guard. “Oh hello, I’m Christine and this is Glen were from the yellow house, you wouldn’t have happened to see our son Eli around here have you? He’s been snooping around this place since we got here and we didn’t want him surprising you.” I told them I hadn’t seen anyone except Paula and they both gave me an odd look then Glen leaned towards me and uttered under his breath, “People like her are dangerous, I’d watch it around her if I were you.” With that they walked away talking to one another. An hour later I stepped outside for some air and saw a big white van in the middle of the street, there was a speaker mounted to the top of it and almost as soon as I noticed it a voiced boomed out from it, “Today’s event will take place in 3 minutes, you must remain inside your homes for the next 72 hours, if you fail to do so you will be penalized, today’s event is worth 5 thousand dollars, good luck.” A timer started counting down over the speaker, I stood there watching the curtains being closed in every house, not knowing what was about to happen I rushed inside and watched through the window waiting to see what was about to happen. When the timer hit zero I was expecting some amazing spectacle but nothing happened at least not at first, eventually the air around me started to warm up, it was barely noticeable at first but after 45 minutes I was dripping sweat, after 2 hours I thought I might pass out it got so hot I could see heat waves in the air and just when I thought I couldn’t take it anymore there was a loud metallic clank and cold air came pouring through the vents.
This went on for the entire first day and by nightfall I was starting to regret doing this. The temperature finally stabilized at 70 degrees and stayed there for the rest of the night, around two in the morning I started to hear someone running through the house, I lay there in bed listening to whoever it was right up until I heard them racing up the stairs. I rolled out of bed and rushed into the hall and froze in place, there standing at the top of the stairs was that horrible thing I’d seen kill my parents, its sickly bulbous yellow eyes locked onto me as its mouth stretched open releasing a swarm of what I thought were fly’s at first till one of them landed on my arm and bit into me. It looked like a tiny person with wings and an oversized mouth, its skin or maybe scales, who knows, was a reflective greenish black and when I say those little fuckers pack a punch, the bite took a chunk of flesh the bastards were trying to eat me. I swatted one and then another and another but the hallway was filling up with them I turned and bolted back into my room slamming the door shut then jamming everything I could get my hands on in the cracks to keep them out, that worked for a few seconds then they started coming through the vents. Rushing to the restroom I closed myself inside and started filling the tub with water while I franticly searched for anything I could use to swat them away. I could hear them buzzing outside the door the sound was so loud there had to be thousands of them, spotting a straw on the floor I remembered an old cartoon and prayed it worked as I scooped it up and dove in the tub submerging myself completely under water and breathing through the straw.
The door burst open and those things blotted out the light, it was suddenly pitch black in there but the straw was working, after a few minutes they fluttered away and I sat up relieved. Gasping and wiping water out of my eyes I heard the worst sound I think I’ve ever heard in my life, a girlish giggle coming from the doorway. Slowly turning I saw her, that same horrible little wrinkled wretch of a creature grinning at me, her oversized mouth filled with protruding half rotted teeth. She lunged at me in the blink of an eye and I jolted back slamming the back of my head into the wall and slipping in the tub, the second I got my balance she was gone. I sat there with the back of my head stinging fully clothed sitting in a tub of water, no sign of the bugs or the girl. Once I had on some dry clothes and was sure the house was empty tried to get something to eat, in the hall leading to the stairs there’s a floor to ceiling mirror I hadn’t paid much attention to until I walked passed it.
I don’t know how to explain it but there was something wrong with my reflection, tiny differences, like the scar on my cheek wasn’t there and my hair seemed darker but I wrote it off and headed for the kitchen. I stood there looking through the fridge and came up with a sandwich and a cold beer then sat down to watch a movie, about half way through I started to hear a tapping sound coming from the window. As long as it wasn’t that girl I thought I could deal with it, I was so wrong. Yanking back the curtain revealed something I wish I could erase from my brain, what I can only describe as a shaved ape was pressing its greasy, splotchy pink naked body against the glass and that tapping sound I mentioned, let’s just say you don’t want to know.
Upon realizing it had been spotted, this horrendous looking freak let out a pig like squeal and detached itself from the glass leaving an ogre shaped wet spot behind. It stood there staring in at me, it didn’t seem to have a neck and its eyes were these big black orbs that were so far apart they were nearly on the sides of its head, its mouth if you could call it that was abnormally wide and drooped in the corners releasing a river of what I hoped was just spit. The rest of its body looked like it was made of chicken skin, it hobbled around making that pig noise for a few seconds before it shambled off vanishing into the woods.
“Jesus Christ, what was that, please tell me it wasn’t doing what I think it was doing.” I said out loud to myself shaking my head, I didn’t look out of a window for the rest of the night. The next morning rolled in and I couldn’t have been happier, walking down the stairs I was hit by a smell that instantly made me gag, the only thing I could compare it to was, a septic tank stuffed with road kill. The stench was so thick I swear I tasted it, looking around the house was clean, I searched for close to an hour and couldn’t find where it was coming from. The smell was so bad it killed my appetite so I just sat there on the couch covering my nose till it finally went away. There was no rule against opening a window for air but the second I did, I regretted it, an ear piercing alarm sounded and every light in the house started flashing until I closed it. I did my best to move on with my day watching movies and playing games occasionally cleaning up just to pass the time, then I caught something moving out of the corner of my eye. At first glance I thought it was a rat, I would catch glimpses of them from time to time throughout the day but never got a good look at one till I went to the restroom.
I was standing there doing my business when I heard bubbling coming from the toilet, glancing down I saw a pair of eyes looking up at me from the drain. I was midstream there was no stopping now so I didn’t, I almost laughed at it till it came flying out of the toilet chomping at a needless to say sensitive area. Now I don’t know about you guys, but having some weird toilet goblin attacking my junk wasn’t high on my list of life goals, I pissed all over the place trying to get back and when that thing landed on the floor in front of me I nearly lost it. The creature didn’t look anything like a rat, it was a lot closer to a deformed really hairy spider with the biggest fangs I’d ever seen in my life. It made this clicking sound that made my eyes water and it reeked of that foul stink that had flooded the house earlier in the day.
It moved incredibly fast, crossing the floor between us in seconds I did the only thing I could think of and kicked it as hard as I could sending it flying through the air and splattering against the wall. Before I could celebrate my small victory a searing pain surged through my foot. The same foot I kicked the thing with was now covered in tiny brown and black quills that were pulsing pumping some sort of toxin into me. “Holy shit!” I screamed as the pain intensified, without thinking I snatched out as many of the quills as I could only to have a few of them lodge themselves into my fingers and palm, it was an insane situation that was about to get a lot worse. The restroom walls started to ripple like waves across a pond as they shifted between a calming white to a neon green then melted away. I could feel the inside of my skull rubbing against my brain, my eyes felt itchy and dry while my tongue seemed to swell causing me to drool uncontrollably. I couldn’t feel my legs but I could feel myself walking or maybe floating through the house, an overwhelming wave of panic crashed into me when I saw the couch turn into Cerberus and come racing towards me all three heads snarling and snapping at the air as my legs carried me up the stairs. I could hear it coming but my body stopped in front of the mirror, I watched in complete terror as my own reflection tore itself apart devouring itself only to be regurgitated and repeat the process. I felt bile rush up the back of my throat and my stomach cramped as I heaved spewing a wiggling mass of snakelike creatures with human faces that cried out “We’re free!” as they splattered on the floor and quickly began to slither away.
I tried to scream but all that came out was a garbled mash up of words that made no sense, the intense growling got closer and vibrated through me, my body moved faster than I thought possible nearly giving me whiplash as it raced down the hall and into my room slamming the door closed behind me. I could see myself bracing against the door but it was almost as if I was outside of my own body watching this happen to someone else. The door quaked and the wall shook from the impact of the hellhound slamming into it, just as the wood splintered and exploded sending me flying across the room everything stopped. I was hanging in mid-air seconds from slamming into the wall, I could hear the ocean or at least that’s what I thought it was, shifting my attention to the wall I saw it rippling just like in the restroom only it wasn’t changing to a neon green. Instead it had a reflective surface and the instant I locked eyes with myself in it time went back to normal and splashed through the wall winding up downstairs on the sofa in front of the T.V.
For a split second I thought it had all been in my head, right up until I saw one of those toilet spider goblin things watching me from the hallway. It scrambled away making that stupid irritating clicking sound as I tried to get up off the sofa. Now any sane person probably would have called it quits after all that but I had nothing to lose, without this job I was homeless. The lingering pain in my foot stuck around for most of the day, things didn’t pick back up until late in the afternoon. I was lighting a cigarette on the stove, when I saw something that shouldn’t be there, it was a door, I had been over every inch of the house and that door wasn’t there before that moment. I may be a lot of things, but stupid isn’t one of them, I didn’t care what was behind that door and I wasn’t going to find out, I got my smoke lit then turned off the burner and limped back to the living room and turned on the television. There were no news stations no local broadcasts from what I could tell there were only movie channels but while I was searching for something to veg out on I noticed an aux channel and decided to check it.
It was a live feed from the yellow house, I could clearly see Glen sitting at the kitchen table talking to a young boy who I figured had to be Eli. There was no sound but the conversation looked intense, Glen was banging his hand on the table and judging his movements I’d say he was probably yelling. The boy didn’t look as if he were paying attention to anything he was talking about and after a few minutes he threw up his hands and stormed out. Christine walked in a few seconds later and the camera switched to Eli who was in his room searching for something. After a quick search he pulled something from under the bed, his back was to the camera so I couldn’t get a look at what he was doing but he turned and looked directly into the camera and held up a white sheet of paper with “Help me” written on it. The feed switched again back to the kitchen but Christine and Glen weren’t there, the feed started switching between rooms literally looking for them until they were spotted in the main room. They were both kneeling in front of a man I hadn’t seen before, he was short and thin with a bald head for some reason I couldn’t see his face, everything else was clear and visible on the screen but when I tried to focus on him it almost looked like he didn’t have a face, just a blank surface with two black dots for eyes. He handed Christine a knife then motioned to Glen, she rose to her feet and stood there looking down at him, I almost couldn’t watch what happened next. Glen tilted his head back and she carved something into his forehead then when she was finished she handed the blade to him and he repeated the process on her. The screen flickered and the man was gone, they both flew into a rage and started wrecking the room, the camera switched back to Eli’s room, he’d barricaded himself in and was trying to get the window open. I watched him trying everything he could think of to shatter the glass but it wouldn’t break, in a matter of seconds his parents were banging on his door. It didn’t take long to force their way in, Christine was the first one in, she rushed him, Eli did everything he could to dodge her but when Glen got involved there was nothing he could do.
Glen pinned him to the ground while Christine stabbed him over and over, I thought that would be the end of it, but it wasn’t. I watched in total disbelief as they tore their only child apart and ate him, when they were done they stripped out of their clothes and had sex in his shredded remains. The feed stopped there, I didn’t know what to do, I paced around contemplating opting out then I remembered the phone in the kitchen. It was one of those old-school rotary phones but there was only one number on it 7. Picking it up and dialing I stood there waiting, it seemed to take forever but eventually someone responded.
“Hello Mr. Greer, how may we assist you?” for a second I didn’t know what to say, my mind went blank and when the voice called out again I snapped out of it. “Something just happened at the yellow house, you need to get someone over there right now!” there was a long pause and I could hear typing over the phone. After a second the voice spoke again, “We have noted your participation, thank you for reporting. Can we help you with anything else?”
“Help me with anything else, are you listening to me, I just watched those people kill their son! You need to send someone right now!” there was another long pause before the voice responded. “We are aware of the situation Mr. Greer, thank you for your concern, have a nice evening.” The line went dead and I was left with this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach, hanging it up I walked to the bar and poured a drink. Nothing happened that night, well almost nothing, around midnight I could have sworn I saw my reflection watching me from the bathroom mirror. It was only for a split second but I know what I saw, the next morning was quiet I avoided the television and played video games all day hoping I could just make it through. No such luck, I heard a crash from downstairs dropping the controller I jolted to my feet and rushed to get a look. I moved slowly listening for any signs of someone in the house, when I got to the kitchen I found the mystery door open and the fridge had been raided. I grabbed the biggest knife I could find and started searching the house again but before I did that I shut that door and moved the table in front of it. I looked everywhere I could think of and came up empty, walking back up the stairs I heard another crash from the kitchen followed by a low grunting, I spun around in time to see that neck less, naked shaved ape, frog man looking fucker come charging out through the hall.
It stopped at the bottom of the stairs making that gut churning grunting sound while licking its lips and staring at me, the first thought through my mind was this thing was about to eat me, then it did something that let me know its plans were so much worse. It uh well, it started humping the air and grunting as its junk scraped the floor leaving a snail trail. I wanted to puke but I kept it down and got up the stairs as quickly as I could, the grunting turned to a high pitched squeal and it came thundering up after me, as I raced passed the mirror I felt a pair of hands grab me and literally snatch me off my feet. A freezing cold shockwave of pain rolled through my body and my tongue went numb, I couldn’t see for a moment but I had to get up that thing would be on me if I didn’t. Staggering and stumbling, I got to my feet just as my vision cleared, a loud thump from behind me made flinch and I turned to see that creature pressing itself against the glass.
“Where am I?” as I uttered those words they echoed and amplified till they were so loud it gave me a splitting headache, when the echo finally faded I realized I was still in the same house but everything was opposite, I’d gone through the mirror. It’s not as cool as it sounds, its actually pretty freaking horrible if you ask me, the mirror doesn’t reflect the whole house, so I was trapped in this small section of hallway with empty unending darkness to either side of me and I wasn’t alone. It started as whispers echoing in from somewhere out there in the pitch black, then it was a shadow that would pass through the hall at high speed knocking me down every single time. Then it showed itself, I half way expected to see a mirror version of myself and I honestly would’ve preferred that to what I saw, I don’t know if any of you are comic book fans but it looked a lot like the “Silver surfer” without a face, its body was constantly changing. One second it would be the size of a child the next an adult shifting between male and female the entire time, it didn’t speak as much as put words in my head it only said two words “Be Still” then it was gone, I can’t begin to tell you how long I was standing there but eventually the creature left and the mirror thing came back to throw me back through the reflection. When I hit the ground on the other side I didn’t waste a second thinking about it I rushed down to the kitchen, found a hammer and nails then made sure the mystery door would never open again.
When the 72 hours were finally over the kitchen phone rang and I was told I could leave the house now. The first thing I did was step out the front door and breathe as deeply as my lungs would allow. I couldn’t help but stare at the yellow house waiting for Christine and Glen to step outside, but they never did. After a few minutes I saw Paula headed towards me with a huge smile on her face, “Hey Cal how was your first event, anything good happen?” I didn’t know what to say, shaking my head and chuckling to myself I looked around the street, “Did you see what Christine and Glen did to Eli?” Paula stepped back and gave me an odd look, “No, how would I have seen that, what are you talking about?”
I told her all about what I’d seen on the aux channel and she didn’t believe me, I thought she would change her mind if I showed her the channel but I’d forgotten the feed went dead after so when I tried to show her it was just a static filled screen with aux in the top right corner. After that I didn’t want to tell her about everything else that happened, it would just make me look insane. She smiled at me and touched my shoulder, “Look Cal, I know the first few days here are kind of weird but you should really try to get some rest, staying up all night can’t be a good for you.” She gave me that smile one last time and headed out, I didn’t think about it until she’d left but how did she know I had been staying up all night? Had she known all along about the channel? Was she watching me? Paranoia is a hell of a thing, I spent the rest of the day looking for cameras, maybe I had missed them the first time around but after a thorough search I didn’t find a single thing.
There wasn’t another event for days, then on a Thursday morning the white van was back. The speaker crackled to life and the announcement was made, “For the next 168 hours you are to stay inside your homes this event begins in 5 minutes. This will be a group event, will the white and blue sectors please report to the green sector. The black and grey sectors are to report to the red sector and the yellow sector is in isolation. You now have 4 minutes, this event will be triple pay for the week phones will be disabled and there will be one food delivery mid-week good luck.”
As soon as the announcement was over there was a knock at the door, while I wasn’t looking forward to another event, I was more than happy to have people with me at least I wouldn’t have to go through it alone. Opening the door I saw Paula standing there with a tall guy that looked like a Duck dynasty reject, he smiled a big goofy smile and extended his hand. “The names Jack, looks like we’re gonna be roomies for a while, I claim the sofa.” I could see Paula rolling her eyes as Jack let go of my hand and found his way over to the sofa area, she smiled and gave me a hug, “Don’t mind him, he’s an idiot.” She whispered in my ear stepping passed me rushing upstairs to find a bedroom.
Jack called out to me as soon as the door slammed shut, “Hey green guy, where’s the toilet, I gotta take a mean one.” I looked over to see him at the bar pouring himself a scotch and looking around the room, when I told him where it was he took his drink and hurried off, a few seconds later Paula came back downstairs with a big smile on her face.
“Jesus Cal, who’d you have to screw to get this house, the blue sector’s a dump compared to this place.” As she walked passed me headed for the kitchen I couldn’t help but notice something was different about her, she wasn’t thin like before, somehow in a week she’d become curvaceous in all the right places making it hard to keep my eyes off her. Once she’d disappeared around the corner Jack’s voice startled me out of my gaze, “So, what’s the issue here Greenie, what’s wrong with this place?”
Turning to face him I spotted him back at the bar refilling his drink, before I could respond Paula stepped up behind me and whispered in my ear, “Have a drink with me.” Jack looked at the two of us then smirked and took a seat on the couch.
While the timer counted down the final seconds before the event, I watched her pouring our drinks, as she handed mine to me Jack stood up and raised his glass, “Here’s to you Greenie, shit’s about to get weird.”
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2020.11.11 20:02 getyaisha Live sex caught in camera

I guess I should start this off by saying, I didn’t have a choice. But that wouldn’t be completely accurate, technically I could have rejected the offer and my life would have continued on the path it was on, but to be real with you I wasn’t doing great.
My life was a mess, I couldn’t keep a job. I was suffering from depression and anxiety. I was barley functioning as a human being, things were looking so dark at that point I thought about ending it all. I had just been released from yet another go nowhere job and was at home one evening when I got a phone call. I put out a lot of applications online at least 15 a day, so it wasn’t abnormal for unknown numbers to show up on my phone, but this wasn’t just any number. This call would be what got me where I am today, which is barricaded inside of a house with hostages, surrounded by U.S. marshals and S.W.A.T.
Let me explain, my name is Calvin Greer and I’ve had horrible luck my entire life. I guess you could say it started at birth, my father, the prize winning pig he was, had major and I mean major drug problems. I don’t mean in and out of jail typical asshole junkie dad shit here, this guy was robbing coke dealers and trading it for guns which brought him right back to his drug of choice “Money”. Now I know what you’re thinking, as addictions go having a money addiction aint that bad of a deal. That would be the case, if you knew what to do with the money, this genius was a gambler and lost it all putting himself so far in debt he could never get out. He owed hundreds of thousands to the type of people you don’t want to owe a dime.
They burnt our house down and took the insurance money but that didn’t even begin to cover what he owed. On top of that he’d wronged a lot of people over the years so the streets wanted him dead. Ultimately he left us stranded in a homeless shelter and vanished for a while.
My mother, god bless her, was a saint. She saved every penny and stacked every dime working herself ragged till we were able to get into an apartment of our own. She did the best with what we had and it worked for us, until it didn’t, times got hard hell years got hard but eventually things got better. There was only one problem, momma had an addiction to, no not drugs or alcohol, and before you go getting all perverted no it wasn’t sex. She was addicted to my dad, she loved him so much she would do whatever it took to find him, and that’s exactly what she did.
I was 10 when we found him, he had been shot and left for dead in Nevada, I’m pretty sure you can guess where. She saw his face on the news and we were there at the hospital the next day, flash forward 7 years and the old man just couldn’t help himself. Don’t get me wrong, he tried, he held down a job for 3 or 4 years before shit went crazy all over again.
This time was different, I’m still not completely sure what he did but suddenly we came into a lot of money. I mean millions, we had the big house on the hill, new cars, the newest clothes, if you could buy it we had it and it was amazing. I was 17 about to be 18 and had lived my whole life up to that point dirt poor. To be millionaires literally overnight was mind blowing. I didn’t know how to act so naturally I went a little wild. I won’t weigh you down with all that, but trust me it was awesome.
Exactly 4 years later there was a knock at the door, I don’t think anyone was ready for what was on the other side of it. I swear it felt like all the air had been sucked out of the room when it opened, there standing in the doorway was a little girl. She couldn’t have been more than 7 or 8 years old, she was wearing one of those old fashioned dresses that made her look like a living doll. Her skin was a weeping discolored mess of prune like flesh, her eyes were oversized protruding yellowish orbs that darted around the room looking at all of us one by one. As bad as all of that was, the thing that really freaked me out was her hair, it was done like one of those child beauty pageant contestants, something about that just disturbed the hell out of me.
Then she spoke, her voice was booming and somehow ear piercing at the same time, the sound of it sent waves of pain through my brain and brought me to my knees. ”Your obligation has not been fulfilled, the contract is void. Your blood is now indebted.” I watched my father being dragged across the room by things I couldn’t see, he screamed and fought as much as he could until he was floating in the air just a few feet from where that thing was standing in the doorway. She raised one hand and made a fist, my father’s body crumbled like a piece of paper. I could hear his bones snapping and crunching under the pressure and with one last flick of her wrist, it was over, his body exploded and coated the room with his blood. My mother died of a heart attack right there in the living room, suddenly I was alone and as I found out a few days later back to being dirt poor, not a penny to my name outside of whatever cash assets I had on hand or hidden away which wasn’t much.
My life took a downward spiral after that, therapy and medication left me in this weird funk that kept me out of focus kind of just stumbling through life. Getting through the next few years would be tough I bounced around for a while till I was able to land a job at the airport cleaning rental cars, from there I got an apartment but that didn’t last long. The company sold its contract and the new owners didn’t want any convicted felons working for them, oh the felony thing is one of those details I fast forwarded through, besides it’s a horrible story. In any case after that I was living in my car for a while until it got stolen one night while I was working through a temp service. There’s a few more ups and downs but I’m sure you get the point by now.
I’d hit rock bottom, there was an eviction notice on my door and no sign of a dime rolling my way to pay on a single thing. Then my phone rang, an almost familiar sounding voice snapped me out of my daze. “Hello Mr. Greer, we recently reviewed your application and would like to offer you a job.” After a brief conversation, I agreed to the terms of the contract and I was told someone would be here to pick me up the next morning.
I don’t think I slept a wink that night and by 6 a.m. someone was knocking at my door, opening it I was greeted by a short old man with a bulging pot belly and long grey hair. He looked me over and grunted to himself before gruffly asking, “Are you Calvin Greer?” once I assured him I was we were off.
The old man turned out to be a talker, he started chatting me up once we were on the road. “So uh, Cal if you don’t mind me asking, have you ever done one of these before?”
Judging by the lingering aroma of weed in the van I could tell this was going to be a fun ride and before I could respond he dug in his shirt pocket and pulled out thumb thick spliff that seemed to fog up the van as soon as he lit it. “The name’s Teddy by the way, you smoke?” he asked passing it to me, smiling to myself I grabbed it and took a hit. Holding it in for a few seconds, I noticed the taste was almost sweet, it coated my mouth with a citrus flavor that reminded me of grapefruit. Choking and exhaling I chuckled and passed it back, “Wow that’s good, but what do you mean, done one of these? I thought this was a job.”
Teddy laughed at me before taking another long pull, “Oh it’s a job alright, just not the kind you’re thinking of.” passing me the blunt he exhaled a cloud and chuckled, “I’ll tell you like I tell everyone who tries this, in the end no one wins, just take the money and shut the fuck up, it’s not worth it.”
I don’t know if was the weed or what but Teddy had a real odd way of talking a lot without saying much. Taking another good hit, glancing out the window for a second I realized we weren’t in the city any more, but there was no way we had come that far that fast, my head started spinning and suddenly I could hear Teddy’s voice telling me to wake up. Rubbing my eyes and sitting up I see Teddy standing outside the van about to open my door, “That shits not for beginners.” He chuckled pulling it open, “Probably should have warned you, but no harm no foul. Were here safe and sound, good luck bro, just remember what I told you and hopefully I’ll see you for the trip home.”
Getting out of the van I found myself looking at a nice little two story house, the walls were made brick that had been painted a deep green that nearly matched the surrounding area. There were six other houses on the street each identical in build but painted different colors, grey, yellow, red, blue, white and black, somehow the entire day had passed it was dark now and I could see lights on in all the houses. On the mailbox to my left I noticed my name on a white envelope taped to it, as Teddy honked his horn and drove away as I grabbed the envelope. Inside was a letter that read:
“Hello Mr. Greer, The house you see in front of you will be your home for the next 365 days. In this time you will be compensated 5,000 dollars weekly for the duration of the job. Food, clothing, and shelter are provided there will be scheduled events that take place weekly at first and becoming daily as time goes on, you are free to opt out at any point terminating the contract and forfeiting your compensation. That money will be divided by the remaining participants, you will have limited access to internet and cable television as well as the freedom to move around the area. You will not be allowed off the property until you either opt out or finish the job.”
The only other thing in the envelope was a pair of keys, walking up to the front door I noticed there was a number painted on the frame 70. Stepping inside my jaw dropped it was identical to the house my parents died in, slowly backing out into the yard I stood there staring at the house. There was no way this was happening, that house was at least three times this size and yet when I looked inside it was all there. I should have opted out right then, god knows I thought about it, but I would be going back to nothing, I needed that money. Patting my pockets for my cigarettes a found what was left of the blunt Teddy was smoking and a note with STFU written on it. I laughed and grabbed my smokes and realized I didn’t have a lighter, “Great” going back inside that house was a nightmare come true, when I closed the door I could have sworn for a split second the knob was covered in blood but as I glanced down at my palm there was nothing there. I could smell my mother’s perfume hanging in the air flashbacks of pool parties and wild nights on the town flooded my mind for a moment followed by that horrible sound I spent years trying to forget.
It was coming from behind me, the wet crunching of bone shattering, tearing through flesh and the wheezing gasps for air. Out of reflex I spun around to see an empty room, everything was gone, I wasn’t in that house any more, the floors were a dark polished wood now and the walls were a sandy tan, in the room to my right was a large leather sectional sofa positioned around a huge flat screen television. To my left another room that led to the kitchen. Upstairs was three bedrooms and a game room decked out with every video game I could think of and a few I’d never heard of, this place was fantastic, and when I found the bar I forgot all about the weird flashbacks and poured myself a drink. Looking around the place I found the closet in the master bed room filled with brand new clothes and shoes, all in my size. Walking around getting a feel for the house I kept looking for cameras, but I never found any, after an hour or so of looking through everything there was a knock at the door.
I didn’t say a word, as quietly as I could I made my way to the door just in time for whoever it was to knock again. Looking through the peephole I see a tall thin woman with medium length brown hair and glasses. “Who is it?!” I barked out still watching, she stepped back slightly surprised and smiled. “I’m Paula from the blue house, I saw you getting dropped off and thought I’d come say hello before the others show up.”
When I finally opened the door Paula smiled and held out her hand to shake, there was something odd about her and not in a cute quirky way either, something about the look in her eye was unsettling. Not trying to be rude, I shook her hand and invited her inside. She stepped through the doorway and paused looking around the house smiling to herself before speaking excitedly, “I knew it, all the houses are completely different. Looks like you got the best one, do you know anything about the job?”
Something about her made me laugh a little, “No, not really, I’m Calvin by the way.” She smiled still looking around until she spotted the bar, the smile vanished and she looked me straight in the eyes, “Can I please have a drink?” something about her sudden mood change felt genuine. “Sure help yourself.” Before I could finish talking she was headed for the bar. Picking through the bottles she raised up an untapped bottle of Makers mark and kissed it before peeling away the wax and pouring a cup. I watched her sniff the drink breathing it in for a second with her eyes closed before finally taking that first sip, “Holy shit, that’s so good. Oh my God I thought I’d have to go a whole year without it, thank you so much. I’ve been here a month now and no one has alcohol, if I were you I wouldn’t tell everyone about this, those guys will be here every day trying to leach off you until you run dry.” She smiled taking another sip, I hadn’t noticed till then that she was covered in tattoos from her neck to her knuckles and she was gorgeous.
“Uh look, Paula is it? Can you please tell me the hells going on here, what are we being paid to do exactly?” she took another sip then refilled her cup. Walking towards the door she paused and smiled at me again, “Live, not to be cryptic or anything but that’s what they want you to do as far as I can tell. Stay here for a year and they’ll pay you to do it. I’m not sure why, Fred from the black house says this is some sort of game, I’m not sure I believe that though. If you ask me I think it’s an experiment, who knows, who cares? In the end we all get a big fat check and its back to the real world.” Finishing of her drink she thanked me for it and left.
I spent the rest of the night smoking and playing video games until I fell asleep, when I woke up I could hear people talking and the sun was up. Getting up and going downstairs I could make out two voices coming from just outside the front door. A man and a woman were arguing back and forward about what they should have brought, shaking my head I didn’t bother asking who it was I just opened the door catching them both off guard. “Oh hello, I’m Christine and this is Glen were from the yellow house, you wouldn’t have happened to see our son Eli around here have you? He’s been snooping around this place since we got here and we didn’t want him surprising you.” I told them I hadn’t seen anyone except Paula and they both gave me an odd look then Glen leaned towards me and uttered under his breath, “People like her are dangerous, I’d watch it around her if I were you.” With that they walked away talking to one another. An hour later I stepped outside for some air and saw a big white van in the middle of the street, there was a speaker mounted to the top of it and almost as soon as I noticed it a voiced boomed out from it, “Today’s event will take place in 3 minutes, you must remain inside your homes for the next 72 hours, if you fail to do so you will be penalized, today’s event is worth 5 thousand dollars, good luck.” A timer started counting down over the speaker, I stood there watching the curtains being closed in every house, not knowing what was about to happen I rushed inside and watched through the window waiting to see what was about to happen. When the timer hit zero o was expecting some amazing spectacle but nothing happened at least not at first, eventually the air around me started to warm up, it was barely noticeable at first but after 45 minutes I was dripping sweat, after 2 hours I thought I might pass out it got so hot I could see heat waves in the air and just when I thought I couldn’t take it anymore there was a loud metallic clank and cold air came pouring through the vents.
This went on for the entire first day and by nightfall I was starting to regret doing this. The temperature finally stabilized at 70 degrees and stayed there for the rest of the night, around two in the morning I started to hear someone running through the house, I lay there in bed listening to whoever it was right up until I heard them racing up the stairs. I rolled out of bed and rushed into the hall and froze in place, there standing at the top of the stairs was that horrible thing I’d seen kill my parents, its sickly bulbous yellow eyes locked onto me as its mouth stretched open releasing a swarm of what I thought were fly’s at first till one of them landed on my arm and bit into me. It looked like a tiny person with wings and an oversized mouth, its skin or maybe scales, who knows, was a reflective greenish black and when I say those little fuckers pack a punch, the bite took a chunk of flesh the bastards were trying to eat me. I swatted one and then another and another but the hallway was filling up with them I turned and bolted back into my room slamming the door shut then jamming everything I could get my hands on in the cracks to keep them out, that worked for a few seconds then they started coming through the vents. Rushing to the restroom I closed myself inside and started filling the tub with water while I franticly searched for anything I could use to swat them away. I could hear them buzzing outside the door the sound was so loud there had to be thousands of them, spotting a straw on the floor I remembered an old cartoon and prayed it worked as I scooped it up and dove in the tub submerging myself completely under water and breathing through the straw.
The door burst open and those things blotted out the light, it was suddenly pitch black in there but the straw was working, after a few minutes they fluttered away and I sat up relieved. Gasping and wiping water out of my eyes I heard the worst sound I think I’ve ever heard in my life, a girlish giggle coming from the doorway. Slowly turning I saw her, that same horrible little wrinkled wretch of a creature grinning at me, her oversized mouth filled with protruding half rotted teeth. She lunged at me in the blink of an eye and I jolted back slamming the back of my head into the wall and slipping in the tub, the second I got my balance she was gone. I sat there with the back of my head stinging fully clothed sitting in a tub of water, no sign of the bugs or the girl. Once I had on some dry clothes and was sure the house was empty tried to get something to eat, in the hall leading to the stairs there’s a floor to ceiling mirror I hadn’t paid much attention to until I walked passed it.
I don’t know how to explain it but there was something wrong with my reflection, tiny differences, like the scar on my cheek wasn’t there and my hair seemed darker but I wrote it off and headed for the kitchen. I stood there looking through the fridge and came up with a sandwich and a cold beer then sat down to watch a movie, about half way through I started to hear a tapping sound coming from the window. As long as it wasn’t that girl I thought I could deal with it, I was so wrong. Yanking back the curtain revealed something I wish I could erase from my brain, what I can only describe as a shaved ape was pressing its greasy, splotchy pink naked body against the glass and that tapping sound I mentioned, let’s just say you don’t want to know.
Upon realizing it had been spotted, this horrendous looking freak let out a pig like squeal and detached itself from the glass leaving an ogre shaped wet spot behind. It stood there staring in at me, it didn’t seem to have a neck and its eyes were these big black orbs that were so far apart they were nearly on the sides of its head, its mouth if you could call it that was abnormally wide and drooped in the corners releasing a river of what I hoped was just spit. The rest of its body looked like it was made of chicken skin, it hobbled around making that pig noise for a few seconds before it shambled off vanishing into the woods.
“Jesus Christ, what was that, please tell me it wasn’t doing what I think it was doing.” I said out loud to myself shaking my head, I didn’t look out of a window for the rest of the night. The next morning rolled in and I couldn’t have been happier, walking down the stairs I was hit by a smell that instantly made me gag, the only thing I could compare it to was, a septic tank stuffed with road kill. The stench was so thick I swear I tasted it, looking around the house was clean, I searched for close to an hour and couldn’t find where it was coming from. The smell was so bad it killed my appetite so I just sat there on the couch covering my nose till it finally went away. There was no rule against opening a window for air but the second I did, I regretted it, an ear piercing alarm sounded and every light in the house started flashing until I closed it. I did my best to move on with my day watching movies and playing games occasionally cleaning up just to pass the time, then I caught something moving out of the corner of my eye. At first glance I thought it was a rat, I would catch glimpses of them from time to time throughout the day but never got a good look at one till I went to the restroom.
I was standing there doing my business when I heard bubbling coming from the toilet, glancing down I saw a pair of eyes looking up at me from the drain. I was midstream there was no stopping now so I didn’t, I almost laughed at it till it came flying out of the toilet chomping at a needless to say sensitive area. Now I don’t know about you guys, but having some weird toilet goblin attacking my junk wasn’t high on my list of life goals, I pissed all over the place trying to get back and when that thing landed on the floor in front of me I nearly lost it. The creature didn’t look anything like a rat, it was a lot closer to a deformed really hairy spider with the biggest fangs I’d ever seen in my life. It made this clicking sound that made my eyes water and it reeked of that foul stink that had flooded the house earlier in the day.
It moved incredibly fast, crossing the floor between us in seconds I did the only thing I could think of and kicked it as hard as I could sending it flying through the air and splattering against the wall. Before I could celebrate my small victory a searing pain surged through my foot. The same foot I kicked the thing with was now covered in tiny brown and black quills that were pulsing pumping some sort of toxin into me. “Holy shit!” I screamed as the pain intensified, without thinking I snatched out as many of the quills as I could only to have a few of them lodge themselves into my fingers and palm, it was an insane situation that was about to get a lot worse. The restroom walls started to ripple like waves across a pond as they shifted between a calming white to a neon green then melted away. I could feel the inside of my skull rubbing against my brain, my eyes felt itchy and dry while my tongue seemed to swell causing me to drool uncontrollably. I couldn’t feel my legs but I could feel myself walking or maybe floating through the house, an overwhelming wave of panic crashed into me when I saw the couch turn into Cerberus and come racing towards me all three heads snarling and snapping at the air as my legs carried me up the stairs. I could hear it coming but my body stopped in front of the mirror, I watched in complete terror as my own reflection tore itself apart devouring itself only to be regurgitated and repeat the process. I felt bile rush up the back of my throat and my stomach cramped as I heaved spewing a wiggling mass of snakelike creatures with human faces that cried out “We’re free!” as they splattered on the floor and quickly began to slither away.
I tried to scream but all that came out was a garbled mash up of words that made no sense, the intense growling got closer and vibrated through me, my body moved faster than I thought possible nearly giving me whiplash as it raced down the hall and into my room slamming the door closed behind me. I could see myself bracing against the door but it was almost as if I was outside of my own body watching this happen to someone else. The door quaked and the wall shook from the impact of the hellhound slamming into it, just as the wood splintered and exploded sending me flying across the room everything stopped. I was hanging in mid-air seconds from slamming into the wall, I could hear the ocean or at least that’s what I thought it was, shifting my attention to the wall I saw it rippling just like in the restroom only it wasn’t changing to a neon green. Instead it had a reflective surface and the instant I locked eyes with myself in it time went back to normal and splashed through the wall winding up downstairs on the sofa in front of the T.V.
For a split second I thought it had all been in my head, right up until I saw one of those toilet spider goblin things watching me from the hallway. It scrambled away making that stupid irritating clicking sound as I tried to get up off the sofa. Now any sane person probably would have called it quits after all that but I had nothing to lose, without this job I was homeless. The lingering pain in my foot stuck around for most of the day, things didn’t pick back up until late in the afternoon. I was lighting a cigarette on the stove, when I saw something that shouldn’t be there, it was a door, I had been over every inch of the house and that door wasn’t there before that moment. I may be a lot of things, but stupid isn’t one of them, I didn’t care what was behind that door and I wasn’t going to find out, I got my smoke lit then turned off the burner and limped back to the living room and turned on the television. There were no news stations no local broadcasts from what I could tell there were only movie channels but while I was searching for something to veg out on I noticed an aux channel and decided to check it.
It was a live feed from the yellow house, I could clearly see Glen sitting at the kitchen table talking to a young boy who I figured had to be Eli. There was no sound but the conversation looked intense, Glen was banging his hand on the table and judging his movements I’d say he was probably yelling. The boy didn’t look as if he were paying attention to anything he was talking about and after a few minutes he threw up his hands and stormed out. Christine walked in a few seconds later and the camera switched to Eli who was in his room searching for something. After a quick search he pulled something from under the bed, his back was to the camera so I couldn’t get a look at what he was doing but he turned and looked directly into the camera and held up a white sheet of paper with “Help me” written on it. The feed switched again back to the kitchen but Christine and Glen weren’t there, the feed started switching between rooms literally looking for them until they were spotted in the main room. They were both kneeling in front of a man I hadn’t seen before, he was short and thin with a bald head for some reason I couldn’t see his face, everything else was clear and visible on the screen but when I tried to focus on him it almost looked like he didn’t have a face, just a blank surface with two black dots for eyes. He handed Christine a knife then motioned to Glen, she rose to her feet and stood there looking down at him, I almost couldn’t watch what happened next. Glen tilted his head back and she carved something into his forehead then when she was finished she handed the blade to him and he repeated the process on her. The screen flickered and the man was gone, they both flew into a rage and started wrecking the room, the camera switched back to Eli’s room, he’d barricaded himself in and was trying to get the window open. I watched him trying everything he could think of to shatter the glass but it wouldn’t break, in a matter of seconds his parents were banging on his door. It didn’t take long to force their way in, Christine was the first one in, she rushed him, Eli did everything he could to dodge her but when Glen got involved there was nothing he could do.
Glen pinned him to the ground while Christine stabbed him over and over, I thought that would be the end of it, but it wasn’t. I watched in total disbelief as they tore their only child apart and ate him, when they were done they stripped out of their clothes and had sex in his shredded remains. The feed stopped there, I didn’t know what to do, I paced around contemplating opting out then I remembered the phone in the kitchen. It was one of those old-school rotary phones but there was only one number on it 7. Picking it up and dialing I stood there waiting, it seemed to take forever but eventually someone responded.
“Hello Mr. Greer, how may we assist you?” for a second I didn’t know what to say, my mind went blank and when the voice called out again I snapped out of it. “Something just happened at the yellow house, you need to get someone over there right now!” there was a long pause and I could hear typing over the phone. After a second the voice spoke again, “We have noted your participation, thank you for reporting. Can we help you with anything else?”
“Help me with anything else, are you listening to me, I just watched those people kill their son! You need to send someone right now!” there was another long pause before the voice responded. “We are aware of the situation Mr. Greer, thank you for your concern, have a nice evening.” The line went dead and I was left with this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach, hanging it up I walked to the bar and poured a drink. Nothing happened that night, well almost nothing, around midnight I could have sworn I saw my reflection watching me from the bathroom mirror. It was only for a split second but I know what I saw, the next morning was quiet I avoided the television and played video games all day hoping I could just make it through. No such luck, I heard a crash from downstairs dropping the controller I jolted to my feet and rushed to get a look. I moved slowly listening for any signs of someone in the house, when I got to the kitchen I found the mystery door open and the fridge had been raided. I grabbed the biggest knife I could find and started searching the house again but before I did that I shut that door and moved the table in front of it. I looked everywhere I could think of and came up empty, walking back up the stairs I heard another crash from the kitchen followed by a low grunting, I spun around in time to see that neck less, naked shaved ape, frog man looking fucker come charging out through the hall.
It stopped at the bottom of the stairs making that gut churning grunting sound while licking its lips and staring at me, the first thought through my mind was this thing was about to eat me, then it did something that let me know its plans were so much worse. It uh well, it started humping the air and grunting as its junk scraped the floor leaving a snail trail. I wanted to puke but I kept it down and got up the stairs as quickly as I could, the grunting turned to a high pitched squeal and it came thundering up after me, as I raced passed the mirror I felt a pair of hands grab me and literally snatch me off my feet. A freezing cold shockwave of pain rolled through my body and my tongue went numb, I couldn’t see for a moment but I had to get up that thing would be on me if I didn’t. Staggering and stumbling, I got to my feet just as my vision cleared, a loud thump from behind me made flinch and I turned to see that creature pressing itself against the glass.
“Where am I?” as I uttered those words they echoed and amplified till they were so loud it gave me a splitting headache, when the echo finally faded I realized I was still in the same house but everything was opposite, I’d gone through the mirror. It’s not as cool as it sounds, its actually pretty freaking horrible if you ask me, the mirror doesn’t reflect the whole house, so I was trapped in this small section of hallway with empty unending darkness to either side of me and I wasn’t alone. It started as whispers echoing in from somewhere out there in the pitch black, then it was a shadow that would pass through the hall at high speed knocking me down every single time. Then it showed itself, I half way expected to see a mirror version of myself and I honestly would’ve preferred that to what I saw, I don’t know if any of you are comic book fans but it looked a lot like the “Silver surfer” without a face, its body was constantly changing. One second it would be the size of a child the next an adult shifting between male and female the entire time, it didn’t speak as much as put words in my head it only said two words “Be Still” then it was gone, I can’t begin to tell you how long I was standing there but eventually the creature left and the mirror thing came back to throw me back through the reflection. When I hit the ground on the other side I didn’t waste a second thinking about it I rushed down to the kitchen, found a hammer and nails then made sure the mystery door would never open again.
When the 72 hours were finally over the kitchen phone rang and I was told I could leave the house now. The first thing I did was step out the front door and breathe as deeply as my lungs would allow. I couldn’t help but stare at the yellow house waiting for Christine and Glen to step outside, but they never did. After a few minutes I saw Paula headed towards me with a huge smile on her face, “Hey Cal how was your first event, anything good happen?” I didn’t know what to say, shaking my head and chuckling to myself I looked around the street, “Did you see what Christine and Glen did to Eli?” Paula stepped back and gave me an odd look, “No, how would I have seen that, what are you talking about?”
I told her all about what I’d seen on the aux channel and she didn’t believe me, I thought she would change her mind if I showed her the channel but I’d forgotten the feed went dead after so when I tried to show her it was just a static filled screen with aux in the top right corner. After that I didn’t want to tell her about everything else that happened, it would just make me look insane. She smiled at me and touched my shoulder, “Look Cal, I know the first few days here are kind of weird but you should really try to get some rest, staying up all night can’t be a good for you.” She gave me that smile one last time and headed out, I didn’t think about it until she’d left but how did she know I had been staying up all night? Had she known all along about the channel? Was she watching me? Paranoia is a hell of a thing, I spent the rest of the day looking for cameras, maybe I had missed them the first time around but after a thorough search I didn’t find a single thing.
There wasn’t another event for days, then on a Thursday morning the white van was back. The speaker crackled to life and the announcement was made, “For the next 168 hours you are to stay inside your homes this event begins in 5 minutes. This will be a group event, will the white and blue sectors please report to the green sector. The black and grey sectors are to report to the red sector and the yellow sector is in isolation. You now have 4 minutes, this event will be triple pay for the week phones will be disabled and there will be one food delivery mid-week good luck.”
As soon as the announcement was over there was a knock at the door, while I wasn’t looking forward to another event, I was more than happy to have people with me at least I wouldn’t have to go through it alone. Opening the door I saw Paula standing there with a tall guy that looked like a Duck dynasty reject, he smiled a big goofy smile and extended his hand. “The names Jack, looks like we’re gonna be roomies for a while, I claim the sofa.” I could see Paula rolling her eyes as Jack let go of my hand and found his way over to the sofa area, she smiled and gave me a hug, “Don’t mind him, he’s an idiot.” She whispered in my ear stepping passed me rushing upstairs to find a bedroom.
Jack called out to me as soon as the door slammed shut, “Hey green guy, where’s the toilet, I gotta take a mean one.” I looked over to see him at the bar pouring himself a scotch and looking around the room, when I told him where it was he took his drink and hurried off, a few seconds later Paula came back downstairs with a big smile on her face.
“Jesus Cal, who’d you have to screw to get this house, the blue sector’s a dump compared to this place.” As she walked passed me headed for the kitchen I couldn’t help but notice something was different about her, she wasn’t thin like before, somehow in a week she’d become curvaceous in all the right places making it hard to keep my eyes off her. Once she’d disappeared around the corner Jack’s voice startled me out of my gaze, “So, what’s the issue here Greenie, what’s wrong with this place?”
Turning to face him I spotted him back at the bar refilling his drink, before I could respond Paula stepped up behind me and whispered in my ear, “Have a drink with me.” Jack looked at the two of us then smirked and took a seat on the couch.
While the timer counted down the final seconds before the event, I watched her pouring our drinks, as she handed mine to me Jack stood up and raised his glass, “Here’s to you Greenie, shit’s about to get weird.”
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2020.11.11 12:00 FunnyNWittyReferenc My All-Media Mega-Watchthrough Part 5: The Fifth Doctor

Previous posts: 4th Doctor part 2, which links to the others in turn.
Well it's been 10 months, meaning I greatly underestimated how long this would take. Maybe it's a consequence of the overwhelming amount of Big Finish that each Doctor comes with now, or maybe it's the massive ongoing global pandemic that sapped my motivation. Who's to say?
Regardless, to the delight of some and the dismay of most, I am back once again.
Continuity:
There's quite a few Annual stories that Eyespider has to do some wild mental gymnastics for, since they feature Adric, Nyssa, and Tegan. All of them are awful and not worth bothering to place, and the most positive note I have on any of them is a 2.5/10 and the comment "it almost gets the Doctor's characterization right" written beside.
There's also a running plot thread of the TARDIS knowing Time-Flight would happen, and doing everything in its power to prevent it. Which, after seeing the episode, yeah, I get it.
I didn't write down in my notes the first time it was mentioned, but I believe it was Iterations of I, where the TARDIS lands in the 80s, nowhere near Heathrow, and the Doctor calls explicit attention to the fact that it's almost like she doesn't want to land there in the 80s.
So all of season 19? Every EU story that starts with Tegan wailing "I thought you were taking me to Heathrow?" It's all because the TARDIS just really really did not want this world to see Time-Flight.
But, you know, Earthshock is fine. She doesn't want to avert that.
There's also Kamelion. Every writer accidentally agrees on Kamelion's fate, though differ on how he got there, creating some problems. Kamelion is built like crap. His design is inherently flawed and he gets taken over by anything that moves. He even once begins to turn into Tegan because she's so mad at him.
He cannot do a single thing right. In the end of every story, be it Big Finish's Kamelion trilogy, The Crystal Brucephalus, or the short trip One Perfect Twilight, Kamelion comes to the conclusion that he's a danger to the TARDIS crew, and should be sent to live in a sort of Zero Room in the TARDIS, where he can't be interfered with.
Of the three times it happens, one decides it's not a happy ending at all. Big Finish and Brucephalus both imply that he can at least know what's going on outside, so he's basically just watching Doctor Who in his room until Planet of Fire. And then the short trip implies it's basically a prison for him. So you get to take you pick on how much he's suffering in your canon, based off how much you hate him.
Oh, and Kamelion Empire makes him a war criminal for some reason. One who has a laser in his chest that makes a stock sound effect that I recognize from Danganronpa, meaning I couldn't take it seriously at all. Next time you watch any of season 21, just remember a really shittily build war criminal is in the TARDIS watching it too.
Other thoughts:
Right off the bat it feels like a direct evolution of season 19. Most eras feel like a pull in a new direction, which of course they are, but season 19 just hits different. It's a breath of fresh air after a full year of Tom Baker, and I think a big part of it is the companions. Giving 4 the season 19 cast just before his death was a stroke of (accidental?) genius. It's no longer just one companion who turns to the camera and says "oh my god guys this is so weird" and then goes "I am fine with it now actually" by the end of the first episode. It's an adjustment for them all, to varying degrees. I think it's the best take on regeneration of them all honestly.
Even though he's fully settled past the turbulent stage and memory loss, he still needs to actually find himself again. It's a period of adjustment, as opposed to "Colin Baker jumps off the floor, goes absolutely mental for 2 serials, and now knows himself again."
Despite this, 5 doesn't really have a character arc. Rather he just gets more and more stressed as the weight of worlds build on his shoulders. This is most apparent in season 21, where it was the theme of the season. "There should have been another way."
As brought up with season 18 last time, I very firmly believe that EU content should try to capture the era it's set in. Don't write a Pirate Planet in season 18, don't write a fun little murder mystery in season 21.
And then they do. Very frequently. We go from Frontios, the bleak edge of the universe where some of the last humans are slowly dying out, to Time in Office, a 4 part comedy romp where 5 has to actually perform his duties as Lord President.
Now, I love Time in Office, it's one of the best Man Range releases I've heard. But it shouldn't be in season 21. In a marathon like this, it breaks the atmosphere and the slight character arc of the Doctor being relentlessly beaten down by the universe because of unlucky circumstance. Of course, nobody is meant to experience the stories like I'm doing. I get that for 5, BF is limited in where they can place things. But it doesn't stop me from being disappointed.
"It stopped being fun, Doctor," loses its impact if you know that between TV episodes there were dozens of normal stories, some that just wrote Tegan out by saying "she just stayed in the TARDIS, it's not because we couldn't get Janet Fielding."
And not related to anything, but I want to talk about the lighting for season 21. My god, it is abysmal. Everything is overlit. The only story that escapes being lit by the sun placed 5 feet away from the stage is Caves of Androzani. Maybe because of being set underground and partially filmed on location, maybe because fate just decided this episode deserved everything going right, but either way it's better than anything around it. Even then, the lighting still rears its hellish head in the scenes of the military base or Morgus' room.
It leaves the whole season feeling flat. I can't look past it, it's a massive detriment to every story. They just did not want a single shadow in this season. [This is an underground scene].(https://i.imgur.com/cEp1hvs.jpg) This is an underground scene from a story that understands there's not a nuclear explosion just off camera.
Best Part of the Era Overall:
The companions, easily. Though not for the same reason as last time.
No, whereas the companions were the only redeeming quality of the Fourth Doctor's era, here they serve the very important purpose of having someone for a much quieter, more reserved Doctor to play off of. People often call Five the bland Doctor, a criticism which I wholeheartedly disagree with. He's trying to be nice, give everyone the benefit of the doubt, and save the day amicably. But by God he is three seconds away from losing his mind at all times. He is very stressed and if you don't stop bickering in the back seat he is going to turn this TARDIS around right now, kids.
Tegan is the best example. Their every interaction is taking years off his life, and with 5 he's at his best when stressed. Sure, he has disputes with Adric because who wouldn't get mad having to put up with him, and he isn't too big of a fan of Turlough at first, but they can't hold their own like Tegan. She's the only one who could match 5's underlying anger through confronting it with her own.
Without her, the TARDIS would be a very dull place. Sure Adric would be annoying occasionally because, well, he's Adric, but he would cower like the worm he is if push came to shove.
Nyssa is... well, she's there. TV doesn't know what to do with her, and Big Finish only do sometimes. Turns out what you can do is point and go "hey! Look at all this trauma over her people's genocide! Want the longest stretch of EU content so far with this character and not really overcoming that?"
The exception to this is scientific debates. Usually some new science or technology will happen/be in place where they land, and the Doctor will say "the ethical implications here make me nervous for when parts 3 and 4 happen and I'll have to turn to the camera and ask if I have the right" and Nyssa will say "no doctor. It is good actually. Can you not see the good this is doing for the majority who are not being tortured to make Torture Juice?" and then they'll argue. I do like it, it's definitely a new type of conflict, but it really needs more than repeating it every other story.
And speaking of companions: Peri, who is just... oh man. Peri.
Worst Parts of the Era Overall:
Yeah. Peri. You were probably expecting this.
Now, I don't hate Peri. I'm excited to see what the EU does to her with 6, because I think she has potential. I was never the biggest fan of her on TV, but I'm sure BF can salvage her.
But oh my God she did not need all of this. She literally has more stories than Adric. And then in Peri and the Piscon Paradox she gets mindwiped of all of them so Caves of Androzani can work.
And then they fuck that one up by not mindwiping the Doctor himself in that episode.
You know, the reason people complain about his fearless sacrifice to save someone he hardly knows being diminished by these 47 stories.
So yeah. People have their own takes on whether the 5/Peri gap is good or not, or whether it devalues Caves. And as the sort-of-technically most qualified person, I can say: haha oh my god no. No it's not. It is so bad.
I don't fully agree with saying it lessens 5's sacrifice in Caves. It's the closest a Classic Who episode gets to perfect, just edging out The War Games. There's no real theme to it that you could say is ruined by this EU content. You just can't say how cool it is that 5 sacrificed himself for an almost total stranger anymore.
But in trying to get that back, the EU fucks it up. They know these stories really don't need to exist and, it seems, the writers sometimes almost don't want them to. But you can't have it both ways. You can't write 3 years of Peri's life out of existence with a mindwipe, while still writing more and more in there.
Oh and they both completely forget about Erimem, but you know what? I'm not broken up about it.
Peri is though because holy shit is she gay for her. Like goddamn, they try so hard to say they're just good friends, and write everything short of a sex scene. Paraphrasing from every other PErimem audio:
ERIMEM: "Oh dear Peri, you appear to have walked in on my changing clothes."
PERI: "[comment about her body delivered so so so not-heterosexually.]"
This is what happens when you try and have a bunch of male authors write a "sisterly bond" (their words, frequently), while being as unashamedly horny as most Who authors are.
There's a scene in The Veiled Leopard where Peri and Erimem go to a party in the 60s, acting like a couple, and tell the guy out front that they're sisters, despite being different races and looking nothing alike. I could not possibly write a more "gay couple trying to act straight in the past" scene and I literally have, as an author of awful Doctor Who fanfic.
And then later that audio Peri is holding Erimem upside down into a trash chute, seeing up her dress, and makes a very heterosexual comment about her underwear.
Sisterly bond though guys, trust us.
Anyway then there's the time the writers go the complete opposite direction and make Peri just really really bigoted and call Erimem the N-word, which was almost unreadable. (Thanks, Blood and Hope.)
Then Erimem left for a shitty heterosexual "finding her true love" ending with a man she had no chemistry with in her final story.
Peri also doesn't remember her own age now because we just cannot help ourselves.
She's 19 in EU material near her introduction. She then has at least three timeskips that I can remember:
Warmonger features a one-year timeskip and is the least of its problems. The Kingmaker strands Peri and Erimem 2 years back from the Doctor, making them wait to catch up. And The Son of the Dragon also has a few stationary months waiting for Erimem to stop having another awful heterosexual romance out of spite for the Doctor.
The Erimem arc is really just her getting on the TARDIS, saying "Doctor I want to leave" "sorry, I was confused, I will stay one more trip" and that happening until she finds a mediocre white guy on Peladon and marries for political power, and this is supposed to be a good thing.
And speaking of companions we forgot, remember Amy and Zara? No?
I didn't remember until 3 drafts in either. They're just so bad. The one thing I will say about Amy: Ciara Janson does a perfect voice for her, and I really like it.
But the character herself deserves to be put on Adric's freighter. Not because she's awful, but because the entire Key2Time trilogy is just a dumpster fire.
There's no originality to it. "Hey remember that thing from 20 years ago? Did you like it? Did you? Cool. Buy this now."
Now, that is Big Finish's business model, but usually (okay, sometimes) they make those stories really work, despite not really needing to be a sequel to whatever.
This is just crap. We even pull the same twist that "yooooo the castle was the segment the entire time, isn't that wild? It's like when the planet was a segment, remember that?"
Zara is comical in the sense that her existence makes me laugh because haha what is she doing here? She's here to be evil. Cool. The Black and White guardians are here too though sooo-
Anyway, hope you're all excited for their return in the Main Range as "old friends!" Preorder now! Please forget the fact that it literally makes no sense to know them unless we're inserting a superfluous solo gap into the superfluous 5/Peri gap where he just leaves her frozen in time a while for no reason at all! It's fine!
I still have no idea what Graceless is and do not wish to learn. All I know is the thought that Key2Time got a spinoff is hilarious and you can't convince me it's canon because I'd have to listen to it.
Also, on companions: Thomas Brewster has the charisma of dog shit on my porch, and did not deserve a happy ending.
Best Novels:
Fear of the Dark:
The best Doctor Who novel, no competition. My only criticism is the ending feeling just a little rushed, but it's almost irrelevant. For once I can remember every side character, they're all distinct, everyone acts in understandable ways, there's no useless edgelord-ery, and I've read it twice. Once before this series and now again, and it held up both times. And I say that as someone who is filled with terror by the idea of rereading a Who book because they've conditioned her to fear them.
The Doctor and companions are perfectly written. 5 is at his absolute best here, it's easily the best depiction of him in any of the novels, and honestly better than some from TV. He's pushed to his breaking point, in a struggle to survive against an ancient evil older than time itself on a forgotten planetoid, cut off from any escape. Imagine how he acts in Caves, except he ends up getting out alive.
Everyone is dropping like flies and the deaths are actually compelling, even for the side characters. Did you like 5 in caves of Androzani? Did you like "SO YOU SEE, I'M NOT GOING TO LET YOU STOP ME NOW!," the best line delivery in the entire franchise? Good. Get this. It's that but for an entire book. At one point 5 almost mercy-kills another character, and it's actually understandable and I wouldn't say it's even overly edgy. That's how good this book is. It makes the usual edgy "will he shoot? The man who never would?" believable, understandable, and have actual stakes.
If you're ever looking for a Doctor Who book recommendation, get this one. I can't imagine anything topping it from my list.
The Sands of Time:
Set directly after Fear of the Dark on Eyespider, it makes the unprecedented two-good-novels-in-a-row streak.
Now, it has its flaws. Nyssa is thrown into a coffin for almost the entire story, Tegan slips out of character sometimes, and the ending is bizarre even before the author writes 5 pages of alternate ending, then writes a page amounting to "but God did not like this ending, so he rewrote it." Maybe they accidentally didn't send out a final draft, who knows.
It's actually a very good mix of Moffat-like timey-wimey (ugh) and Chibnall "globetrotting" styles, with the story being spread across a dozen times and locations out of order. It's sort of a mystery book, except instead of being a murder it's "what is happening with Nyssa and how do we free her?" 5 is well characterized and once more is prepared to do whatever it takes, Tegan is a delight as ever, and all the side characters are actually pretty good.
It also manages to not just fanwank Black Orchid, City of Death, and Pyramids of Mars, but make them all play a role in the story. Though the ending does seem like cheap bullshit if you've not seen Black Orchid, but if you're reading PDAs you probably have.
Divided Loyalties:
Yeah. You heard me.
Now, I absolutely cannot recommend this book. It's fanwank to the highest degree. The dialogue rages from strained to abysmal.
In spite of that I like it. And usually I think it's laughable when people review things like that, saying "it's all bad but it's so fun to read" because it usually ends up being just weirdly defensive of an author they like slipping up and just pumping out some garbage. See: Warmonger (and oh we will).
So take my defense of this novel with a grain of salt. I'm not even going to lie and say it's well written, the go-to "I can't defend anything in this but I feel I have to."
The thing I like is the character interactions. The little slice of life in the TARDIS bit we get is just perfect, I can't really explain. Of course then it comes with bad dialogue and things like this, confirming Adric to be an Alzarian Neckbeard. It's definitely full of winks and nods to continuity because of course, it's a Gary Russel book. The TARDIS crew are all doubting their role after the Doctor's recent regeneration, and you get to see how they think of themselves. Adric's ego matches almost mine, but he's unaware of it. Most of the book for him is spent wondering why everyone picks on him which yeah, I'd buy that that's what's in Adric's head.
The plot is cool. It expands on the Great Old Ones and if you can't tell by the first two novels I mentioned, I am an absolute sucker for elder god/higher being stories.
I like the idea of the Doctor having fucked up something in his past, before leaving Gallifrey. I dislike everything about the Deca, a group of ten young Time Lords in the academy. Consisting of the Doctor, Koschei (the Master), Ushas (the Rani), Mortimus (the Monk), Drax, Vansell (some godawful Big Finish creation that didn't need this), That One Time Lord From Genesis of the Daleks, two characters exclusive to this novel, and Magnus, also known as the War Chief. (The War Chief is not the Master, in case you cared/were still confused.)
So yeah. I can't defend this. I like it. Don't ever read it.
Goth Opera:
The first PDA, and it... it certainly showed what was to come. It's needlessly edgy, dumb as all hell, and by all rights I shouldn't like anything about it.
And yet. I think I just appreciate the atmosphere and Buffy-ness of it. It was definitely entertaining for being (I have to say it, I'm sorry) batshit and having moments like this, where Nyssa fights a baby and then becomes a vampire and fills the rest of the book with hungry gay vampire lust.
Worst Novels:
(Content warning: basically everything from here out.)
Alright. First off the shilling.
My favorite segment is the novels, as shown in literally every post where they take up so much space. I realize that these posts are a lot, they're usually right up against the character limit. They take hours to read, and days to write. I realize maybe not everyone is so interested in the novels and me just ranting. Hell, I had to cut out my Blood and Hope, Ultimate Treasure, and King of Terror reviews entirely for this post. All of which would be as long as my Warmonger rant.
So I created a youtube account where I will be making a series of videos going more in depth about the books, probably reviewing some audios, and, more importantly, making some companion videos to this series.
Now, it doesn't have any videos on it at the moment. I'm currently moving between countries, and I have nowhere to actually record where it won't sound just awful. But I will be uploading soon, almost definitely by the end of the year, and if more of this is appealing to you it'd mean a lot if you subscribed and watched when that actually gets started.
Or alternatively just following me on Twitter, where I do livetweet threads of the awful books I have to read. I'm currently reading Synthespians™, which is notoriously stupid.
Warmonger:
Fuck this book. This brings out a hatred I have not felt since Combat Rock. It doesn't even have the decency to be hilariously incompetent in the edge, like Mick Lewis.
Here's my Twitter thread for it. I'm going to try to get it all together here, but due to the character limit I'm going to have to cut stuff out.
So this book is written by Terrance Dicks, the man who should have a better grasp on the Whoniverse than anyone else, having novelized most of it. A legend in the fandom, having written a lot of older fans childhoods. I get wanting to defend him.
Don't do that. There is no excuse for this book.
Every review on Pagefillers is "everything about this is awful. It's written poorly. But the pages fly by! I just can't hate anything uncle Terry makes. 9/10."
Just because someone you like wrote something doesn't give it value. This book fails on its own merits. At the very least, it's a showcase into the importance of editors, and people who will tell you no.
So the first thing that happens is a 40 page long "present day" sequence where Peri is a guerilla leader who doesn't care about her group of rebels, and offhandedly mentions one of them was raped and has PTSD. Which really just sets the tone here, doesn't it?
After getting captured by the bad guys, despite their group being apparently the only 6 people standing in their way, they then sentence them to execution in the morning, giving them 12 hours to escape.
They also care about committing war crimes for some reason. Then Peri and only Peri is saved by a military of Sontaran/Draconian/Ogron alliances, and brought to "the Supremo."
Surprise! It's the Doctor! Record scratch. Time to find out how we got here. Jump back one year.
It all started because a bird alien thing attacked Peri and the Doctor fought it off by voring it. Peri's arm is, like, really badly hurt. Just so messed up.
So messed up, in fact, that the Doctor doesn't know what to do. He's in the TARDIS but, as we're told many times, there's just nowhere in all of time or space he can take her to fix up a not-even-detached arm. Can't be done. Nowhere. Not even Gallifrey. There's only one man who can do it, and we're told it's an under 40% survival rate.
Not only can nobody in literally ever fix a lost limb, they can't even stop you from dying from blood loss. Now, call me stupid, but I'm pretty sure people on Earth have survived that.
The Doctor shows some touching concern for Peri, clearly behaving exactly as he did in Caves, the very next story after this.
The "one man in the universe" is Solon, who you may remember as "that one dude from Brain of Morbius" or "literally who?" His assistant Drago is here, with two hands, making this a prequel.
The story is set on Karn and oh boy. Apparently there's a building just off camera in Brain that used to be like, some sort of castle, but is now a hospital? I don't even know, it's stupid.
It's worth noting that the writing is just awful in every way, and this reads beat for beat like my own writing from last year. The editor must have died on the job and fell onto the "yeah start printing" button beside him.
Then the book just drags ass. The entire first 3rd is spent here, waiting for Peri to get better from a surgery I cannot believe would even be a problem in the future. I can't imagine thinking it was a logical plot point to include, it's so incredibly contrived.
Solon poisons Peri after she finds his lab, where he's decided to make some Frankenstiens, and then uses this as leverage to get the Doctor to go to the Sisterhood and beg for just a drop of elixir, madame.
The Sisterhood want to know if he's a high ranking Time Lord and he goes "haha no :)" because Dicks just straight-up forgot he wrote The 5 Doctors.
5 then just fucking namedrops being pals with Hitler out of nowhere, while having the gall to mention honour in the same paragraph.
Were you wondering what happened with Drago? Has that been a burning question on your mind since 1975?
Well first, get some professional help. Dicks explains that anyway. It's a lobotomy. Enjoy! Maybe Drago can even read this book now and give it a 9/10 on Goodreads.
Peri wants to interfere with Solon and stop his evil plan, but the Doctor just keeps shooting it down. "Peri we can't interfere. I can't tell you why. Just wait one more day and we can leave."
She asks him dozens of times, but he does not care. He doesn't explain that he literally knows the future and Solon gets what's coming to him and fails anyway, hurting nobody. Because if he did, that'd make the entire second half not happen. The whole plot hinges on him refusing to fanwank, in a PDA.
Suddenly, on the eve of a... diplomatic meeting... a mysterious Time Lord shows up! Holy shit! I'm at an utter loss as to who this could be in a prequel to The Brain of Morbius (1975). Is it the Master? The Rani? That One Time Lord From Genesis And Also *Divided Loyalties?
It's a good thing Peri was shopping (we do always B shopping) for clothes in this fucking hospital so that they now have something to wear to this event. Most of the hospital staff and patients are invited to this fancy dress intergalactic diplomacy mission because fuck it.
The Doctor then bugs the intergalactic meeting because he's curious who the Time Lord on Karn in the same time period as Solon is. You see, Time Lords can mindscan each other at first sight, but this guy is shielding his. Curious.
It makes the Doctor a real clown for falling for all of the Master's disguises but sure. Anyway, in the "peace" conference we find out holy shit! It's a lie! It's a plan to band together and take over the galaxy! And this Time Lord... is Morbius! I'm very confused because I thought it was the War Chief but I'll go along.
Peri refuses to believe the creepy man dressed in all black and who looks like he wants to kill everyone is evil, because she wants to have sex with him now. She refuses to believe the Doctor recounting word for word what they said about her in their secret meeting, and then goes back to Morbius. She gets kidnapped by him because no shit, Peri.
Peri contemplates killing herself, they taunt her with gang rape, she cuts off chunks of her skin to fake a disease and gets thrown into an escape pod and abandoned. What the actual fuck.
Meanwhile the Doctor goes to Gallifrey to tell them Morbius is doing bad things. He gets there in a spaceship, somehow bypassing the transduction barriers and everything established about Gallifrey. He needs to be disguised, because the Time Lords don't like him. Despite the last fucking plot point being that a Time Lord can always tell when another is hiding their identity.
So he wears a blackface drug because the future's priorities are weird I guess. Arm fixing? Nope, get fucked. Blackface drug? Let me hook you up.
He's so afraid of incurring the Lord President's wrath because the Time Lords hate him. You know, the Lord President? The position he was given in The Five Doctors, that Dicks wrote?
And then he just shits onto the page. He doesn't even give a fuck about continuity. This is Gallifrey in the past. When? Fuck you. It mentions being before Borusa tutored the Doctor, aka before he left Gallifrey. But then they all know who the Doctor is, and his stealing of a type 40. Then all his crimes are mentioned, how the Time Lords still want to put him on trial for interfering, etc. So it's like, between The Beginning and War Games, but with 50 conflicting history elements. Even if Galifrey ran concurrent to Karn, they sent the 4th Doctor there what can't be 20 years later. This would have to take place after Deadly Assassin at the very least, but it just doesn't. He just forgot Gallifrey was in anything other than War Games.
They get the Doctor to promise to lead their space military to chase down and destroy Morbius by granting him a pardon for all his crimes. You know, the one he wouldn't get if they were pre-War Games.
We begin recruiting every race you've ever heard of in Doctor Who to fight Morbius. The Draconians join, and we keep getting told how weird and foreign their vaguely-Asian culture is, and he literally always brings up their "slanted eyes."
We get the Sontarans by just... fuck knows. Promising a war?
The Ogrons show up and pledge themselves to the cause because fuck it. Whatever.
Then we get to the Cybermen, by appealing to their emotions of arrogance and paranoia. They have literally one character trait, and it's their lack of them. You fucked up the only thing about them.
Somehow Ice Warriors get involved off screen because just why not. You've heard of them. Like it. The story is good now.
We're caught up to present day, and then this shit happens. There is too much to unpack here. I think it sums up this book really well. "Peri, I would have sex with you, but that would be incest for some reason. HEY, REMEMBER THAT THING FROM TV 20 YEARS AGO?"
Anyway the final battle starts to happen, having herded Morbius back to Karn. It's utter tripe and it's just lasers firing at each other. Cool.
The Man Who Never Would picks up a gun and mows people down, this crap happens, whatever. I am so tired.
So we capture Morbius, the Time Lords want him executed, the Doctor has to keep time on track, zzzzzz. He lets Solon do his thing and steals his brain, then fakes the execution and leaves.
In the TARDIS he and Peri conclude that they'll literally just move past their PTSD saying "oh nah I didn't like that." Peri asks the Doctor to recount Brain of Morbius for her and he finally complies, ending the story there so you could go watch it.
All in all, I have to say Peri summarizes nicely. And, just like Combat Rock, he's kind enough to write this line that's so open to mockery it makes my job comically easy.
There's also a part where the troops just decide to start using fascist iconography and holding military parades and stuff to appease "Supremo." Because that's where fascism comes from. It's just when your soldiers want to hold military parades actually, you're just giving them what they want. That's definitely what happened in North Korea. Good job Terry.
The Doctor has to be nerfed and not realize the Brain of Morbius ever happened, and yet he spends every 4th page screaming about how cool it was.
Overall this book is on Combat Rock's level, the second worst I've ever read, surpassing even Rags. It doesn't even entertain me in its edge. It's a shittily written slog all the way through, filled with lame or incomprehensible plot points, edge, rape, and blackface drugs.
Best Audios:
Time in Office:
I touched on it earlier and am running low on space. It's easily one of the best and funniest main range entries, I've heard it 3 times. The only problem I have with it is it taking place after Frontios, and its explanation of Turlough "resting" in the TARDIS because they couldn't get Strickson, despite the story taking place over weeks. I guess he was really tired.
And You Will Obey Me:
The whole trilogy is great (I look forward to the time I understand what the fuck happens in The 2 Masters), and the Master manipulating his "children" for years is very entertaining. It has a nice creepy atmosphere, though the inclusion of the alien race is weird and doesn't really seem necessary. The ending is a little rushed, but Peter Davison is on top form here.
Devil in the Mist/Black Thursday/Power Game/The Kamelion Empire:
It's such a good trilogy. Kamelion gets to exist and, even though he's still pretty useless, it's nice to at least see him get some characterization. All of the stories are incredibly fun, especially Power Game. I'm a big fan of "Doctor Who but they're in a satire of game shows," and it doesn't disappoint. Also confirms Kamelion is a nonbinary icon. There's also a great part in Devil where the Doctor breaks his spine and has to come to terms with being paralyzed until his next regeneration, and it hits harder than a standard "he's really badly injured but doesn't want to worry anyone" plot. Mainly because it wouldn't end his life, but still impact it. It being the start of the trilogy is good too, because it gives at least a little bit of stakes to the whole thing. Sure, he'll get better by the end of the trilogy, but by this audio? Listen and see.
Spare Parts: It's better than Chimes of Midnight. I said it.
I love it. The horror is fantastic, and it being an audio only helps. Now they can't commit what I find the cardinal sin of the Cybermen: showing us. See: the Lone Cyberman. It's a family show, and you could never do the Cybermen justice on TV there.
Conversion is hell. You are mangled beyond recognition, jammed into a suit, and kept alive. You're not putting it on like a costume (fuck you, Timeless Children/Attack of the Cybermen) because it's not meant to fit a human inside it. Not before they've fucked you up so hard that even if taken out of the suit you'd be disfigured for life.
It's one way. That's what this story shows. It's left entirely up to you what it looks like. There's one line from a side character, seeing a Cyberman for the first time, that I think is perfect: "my daughter looks like roadkill."
This is the perfect genesis of the Cybermen, and possibly the best Big Finish audio ever.
Circular Time:
Okay, this is just because of Circular Time: Winter. I'm not too big a fan of Spring and Summer though.
Autumn is a Doctor Who story without outside conflict. It's pure, low stakes character drama, and it hits it out of the... park? I don't know a cricket analogy. It would be funnier if I did.
Oh and for some reason Nyssa has sex.
Winter is equally poignant, set in the dying moments of the 5th Doctor, and taking place entirely in his mind. It's a perfect sendoff for him, and watching concurrently with Caves made it all the better.
Warzone/Conversion:
Finally, another story that knows how to properly use the Cybermen. I don't want to spoil anything, the first part is a bit stupid but the second part is fantastic. It once again features the Doctor going full "NOT GOING TO LET YOU STOP ME NOW."
Worst Audios:
Key2Time, for reasons explained before.
The Axis of Insanity:
It's bog standard Doctor Who and the only interesting idea, a crossroads of all timelines, is almost irrelevant. The villain is the most grating I've ever heard. Peri and Erimem are incredibly generic when they're not out of character, and it beats you over the head with "witty" dialogue in every sentence.
Nekromantia:
You knew it'd be here.
My immediate reaction was shock. Not because it's the worst thing ever, but because it wasn't. I was told this audio would be hell, I would come out screaming in agony, etc.
It's not worse than the average PDA.
I'm not even joking, it has like 5 awful scenes, and is otherwise dull as hell. That's most books I read.
Now, that's not a defense of Nekromantia, more so a condemnation of the novels. If this script was so bad that Peter Davison got the writer fired and we all agree that's good (I do), why did most PDAs happen?
The Helliax Rift:
The most boring BF story in recent history. UNIT hating the Doctor is confusing and stupid, it takes ages to get anywhere, and the moral dilemma is hamfisted and dull. The only thing of interest is that a character's mother shagged an alien.
Dalek Soul:
Have you heard Natural History of Fear? Did you like that twist? I hate it. This is just that with Daleks.
Best Short Stories:
Artificial Intelligence:
Told through the point of view of an AI with the default personality of a teenage girl. Her knowledge increases exponentially, ascending beyond anything we could understand and yup, it's a higher being story. The Doctor's involvement is only in the last few pages, but I'm not even complaining. It's great.
Not So Much a Programme, More a Way of Life:
It's satire on Doctor Who fans. I agree, we're awful. 10/10.
Worst Short Stories:
Lackaday Express:
I don't even know. It's dreamscape trash. It's completely incomprehensible, and I mean completely.
White Man's Burden:
The Doctor annexes South Africa.
Dishonourable mentions: every Annual story.
Comics:
No best or worst here. I read them, they're just unrateable. They don't really feel like Doctor Who, they're in their own liminal space. They have good moments, decent storylines, and I like Stockbridge. But the Doctor still is yet to actually be in character.
Final Thoughts:
No Best or worst TV episodes this time either. I need room to fit the Warmonger rant, plus I like almost all of them.
So yeah. Now that Tom Baker is defeated, I have a will to live again. I'm hoping after my move I can get started on my Youtube thing, because I have 4 whole books I couldn't even get to because I wanted to talk abuot Warmonger. There's even a few audios and short trips I couldn't talk about. This post is at the edge of the character limit, making it the longest one yet.
I'm really looking forward to 6, and seeing if his character arc works across his whole life, or if, like season consistency in EU content, they just do more or less whatever.
As there's more and more content per-Doctor, I find it harder to summarize my thoughts in only one post and am having to rethink how I do this. Hence my branching out into videos and possibly even a shit blog, just to catalogue it all. At one point this post was 51k/40k characters long.
New ranking too: 5 > 12 > 8 > 6 > 7 > 2 > 11 > 1 > 3 > 9 > 13 > War > 10 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 4
And finally, the fun fact to end on: in addition to taking a blackface drug, 5 takes space-cocaine in an Annual story, after which he defeats a giant space-ship-eating monster with his bare hands.
See you either on Youtube or Twitter, or in another 6-10 months.
submitted by FunnyNWittyReferenc to gallifrey [link] [comments]


2020.11.10 05:11 LuckyDuck99 Blake’s 7 - Questions Raised - Pint Sized Roundup........

The world is ending!!! ( or so they keep telling us.......... )
This is no time to be doing full round up’s so here’s some pint sized questions that are being raised, taken from the entire run of B7.
And in a bizarre scattergun order.
Killer.
Why didn’t Blake, Avon or Vila get the virus despite spending all that time on the base and being perfect candidates for it given they do nothing but travel in space, also everyone else on the base maybe even the planet died...
Did The Federation not send down a search team later after the episode ended or did they just trust a message from a wanted terrorist saying it wasn’t safe?
Vila questions Avon’s thoughts on Blake ( “You don’t have much time for Blake, do you?”... ) which is fine if this was episode 4 of series 1 but here in episode 7 of series 2 it makes little to no sense. This is a conversation that would have taken place months if not years ago.
Why would Blake know about events that took place on Earth that from his point of view are at least 500 years in the past? I thought the Federation suppressed knowledge, on top of which hasn’t he had his mind wiped a few times as well yet he knows about blankets, smallpox and Lord Jeffrey Ashley..... Yet the top base commander hadn’t heard of any of this....
Blake it seems is also an expert on early space travel that once again took place hundreds of years before he was born, did he study history in Federation school then?
Why does everyone on the base wear such silly outfits?
What’s up with Jenna this episode, she is acting all wifey like with Blake and he in turn is responding to it.
Why is the base commander so welcoming to a self confessed enemy of the Federation, even his sidekick isn’t bothered by this. He’s more concerned about his pension, so the Federation pays pensions then? Doesn’t this put them at odds with being a brutal dictatorship?
So the mystery aliens capture a Earth ship and infect one crew member with this super virus and then set it off in space hoping that in the vastness of space it will somehow get back to Earth? Or just reach humans in space somewhere and then infect them all to stop them finding and wiping out the mystery aliens unless of course humans find and wipe out the aliens before the ship finds anything or anyone in the huge amounts of space and time it would take for the ship to get anywhere. Great plan guys.
Stardrive.
Ok so the Space Rats have fast little ships thanks to the Photonic Drive but where the hell did they get weapons capable of destroying in seconds not one, not two, but three, fully sized, fully armed and fully crewed Federation Pursuit ships? Also how the hell does a space pod have the room to house a weapon like that? What the hell is going on here? Why aren’t the crew going after that weapon instead of a space drive?
If the Space Rat leader isn’t a Space Rat why is he their leader?
Why are all the Space Rats dressed like 1980’s Punks?
Why did the crew land the ship, were they afraid of being attacked by Space Choppers?
Orac could have just told them what was up with the video footage yet he wouldn’t, why? His talk of amazing lack of observations doesn’t cut it. No human eye could ever have seen something that appeared on three frames of film running at normal speed.
Why would the crew record some passing Federation ships, they had no way of knowing before hand that the ships would be blown up by Rats in space so it was super lucky they caught it on tape wasn’t it.
Like Danya says why not patch the video in to the crew room on the base and do it in comfort? ( The real reason would be cause the guys didn’t want to film on a different set so they have Avon say awwwwww hell no, we do’s it now, here..... )
Vila pretended to be drunk to leak the info on how to repair the drive in space without a space suit. Why didn’t Avon, Tarrant, or Slave know this information already though?
Avon’s little asteroid adventure just shows once again why he should NOT be in charge and yet once again just weeks after getting the Liberator blown to hell the gang all go along with it with the same dire ending for them. In fact why are the crew still listening or following Avon at all after Terminal. Tarrant should either be in charge or the whole gang should have gone their own way.
Orbit.
Was the Tachyon Funnel real or just a fake, set up by Servalan and the guy out of Corrie?
If it was real how the hell does it work?
How did it get a live real time feed of a star light years away on it’s little John Menzies style B&W TV? The guy out of Corrie tapped in to a space probe you say? Ok, how did he know there was ( if there was... ) a space probe all the way out there? Plus even if that was the case ( and it wasn’t!! ) how does the TF target anything else in the universe? Where’s it getting it’s pictures and targeting coordinates from? This gives us a very real clue that the whole thing is a fake..............
But later on Servalan says that she could destroy the Scorpio right now meaning that the TF MUST be real or at least Servalan thinks so which again raises the question of why she doesn’t kill the two old clowns and start taking over the universe... ( just as long as the electric supply holds out... )
How was it built? How was it tested?
If it was real why would Servalan risk losing it when she could have killed the pair any time and taken it for herself?
Why after all this time did Avon now think he would need a fake Orac just in case something like this came up? So he went and built one just on the off chance. He must have also hid it on the base since the crew didn’t know about it, well apart from Tarrant who did for some reason, unless Avon only told him before he left to go back down to the dome. Why didn’t he do this in series 2 0r 3? Or did he and there was a fake Orac aboard the Liberator that got blown up.
Servalan has been killing anyone who knows who she is yet she lets the guy out of Corrie go free at the end, why?
The gang couldn’t use the TF on the dome from the shuttle because it wasn’t connected up so does that mean a super weapon runs on electricity?
If the Neutron Star fragment was so heavy ( and they say a teaspoon full weighs more than Mt Everest so even a microscopic fragment would weigh a fair bit..... ) how was Avon able to move it? Come to that how was the shuttle able to even fly at all?
The guy out of Corrie builds a weapon that can destroy planets light years away with the touch of a button but makes a big deal about needing Orac, what on earth for if he did all that without Orac’s help?
Traitor.
Why do Tarrant and Danya change clothes once down on the planet and to go see Dr Strangelove and then change back again to their normal outfits to teleport back up to the ship?
Did the eye patch guy really need that or was it just an affectation?
Avon is glad to hear that Servalan is still alive when in fact it just makes his failure at Terminal all the more damning.
Why is Vila so talkative in this episode? He won’t shut up.
So no one knew who was running their Federation outside of a handful of people at the top? How does that work?
Once again why is the planet being run like an old British Colonial colony in the days of the Raj? They even drink tea...... and play chess........
Why does Servalan say she’s going to cut Dr Strangeloves drugs but then shoot him seconds later? Doesn’t she need him to make the wonder control drug? Also they say here the drug goes soft after a few hours so how does it end up being used to suppress the whole universe by episode 12?
Why didn’t Dr Strangelove blow Servalan up like he told Tarrant and Danya he would with his bomb?
Why has Avon now become Blake? He didn’t give a damn about the universe in series 3 when he had the power of the Liberator behind him, yet now with no need and no real way of taking on the Federation ( the same Federation that it was said would be wiped out should anything ever happen to Star One... ) he wants to wipe it out, when he is quite safe on a hidden base on a dead world at the edge of space. What the hell!!!
Why is a guy on the planet and then Tarrant wearing Avon’s old black studs outfit from series 2? Is it a universal design like a T Shirt?
Vila, the man not the episode ( cause there isn’t one.... )
Vila is either the smartest man in the universe or a drunk fool, so which is it cause the show can’t seem to make up it’s mind. The alien that took over Cally in series 3 said he had a massive IQ yet acted like a fool. Yet in series 4 he spends most of his time drunk. The crew don’t respect him despite him having saved their lives many times and Orac from destruction in Terminal.
Hostage.
Travis goes on and on about the word yet he has been present many, many times when the gang teleported up so was he faking it just to fool Vila?
How safe will Blake’s relatives be on that planet? Servalan could just blow it up a week later, why doesn’t Blake think of this?
If the Crimos are all so smart why do they all end up dead?
Pressure Point.
What’s the point of the fake control room if no one has ever got past the grass that blows you up?
Why does Servalan wear a silly hat in this adventure?
Kasibi is a bad mother.
How long did Kasibi’s daughter really last before she was killed by Federation forces once Blake took off at the episodes end? Not too long would be my guess.
Gambit.
Why is Docholli allowed to get away with his crimes?
Why is Chenie so keen on him? Why does she also dress like a saloon bargirl from the time of the Old American West on Earth?
How can Orac shrink down in size, why has he never used this before and why will he never do it again?
Avon and Vila want to be rich, yet they once again forget there are rooms full of riches right there onboard the ship, why not take them and flee. To hell with Blake.
Having got their winnings they then don’t do anything with them so what was the point?
The ship was left completely unmanned in orbit, even Orac wasn’t on board, wasn’t this a huge risk to take?
Orac.
How is Orac able to predict the future?
Why does he never ever do this again? It sure would have come in handy say round about near the end of series 3 and 4......
Avon could have executed Travis and Servalan right there and then yet he listened to Blake and didn’t, why would he do this? It’s doubly stupid if, as he said he was aiming for his head and missed in the first place, just shoot him again Avon, simple, in fact shoot them both. Odd how Blake had no qualms about killing them and a bunch of others at the end of Project Avalon.
Didn’t Ensor have like 40 years to sort out some spare power cells, why leave it till literally the last minute?
Also Ensor was a bad father that trapped his son on a planet all his life and got him killed in order to save his own life which he then failed to do anyway. He also got the bird killed cause there is no one there to feed it now. In short, Ensor is a selfish controlling arsehole.
Warlord.
So are words just words?
Why does Zeeona model herself on Toyah the punk from the 80’s?
Are the guards killing or stunning the people on the Boots Escalators at the start, cause if they are killing them won’t their boss have something to say about that? If nothing else it’s just making a huge mess that someone will have to clear up.
Did Zeeona commit s***** at the end or did she genuinely mess up by taking her glove off?
Why did Avon and Soolin dress up in workman Bob the Builder style overalls to travel to Betafile, why didn’t they wear their normal outfits?
Pink hair, Orange hair, what’s up with all this?
Servalan knows that Pink hair knows the location of the base but rather than torture/drug him she blows him up, what is her line of thinking here? We know from Animals that she has drugs that make people tell the truth no matter what.
Tarrant spends the episode acting like a love sick puppy, but he’ll get over it soon enough in the next episode apart from one line about pink hair. Hey, wasn’t Tarrant in love with Servalan just a few episodes back? I guess he moves on quick.
Headhunter.
How is the Muller Android keeping his former masters head on, how is he making it move it’s mouth? How is he stopping it decay and smell bad?
Was Oxo mum a sex worker who was only interested in Muller for his money? She did say the relationship was “recreational”
Could Orac and Muller’s Android really have taken over the universe? Orac seemed to think so, he said humanity was at an end, but in reality wouldn’t blowing up the planet the Android was on have stopped it?
If the Android hadn’t done it for them would the crew have killed Oxo mum after the adventure was over as she must know the location of the base......
Did Tarrant do the right thing by blowing up the now safe Android or was Avon right, did this act go on to cost the crew their lives in episode 13?
Was the Android really planning on taking over the universe? How was it expecting to do this?
So, the same bombs that were used on Star One in series 2. Is this just a standard bomb design used all across the universe then?
Had the crew kept the headed safe Android what would they have done with it? Flown around the galaxy attacking Federation bases, but what was the range on the circuit breaker, yeah it could stop guns, guns that were 5 inches away from it, but could it stop a fleet of star fighters from being launched from the ground while in planetary orbit on the ship?
Those space suits..................................
If the Android hadn’t killed him what did Avon want with Muller, what did he expect him to be able to do to take down the Federation and how long would he and Oxo mum have stayed on the base?
Who built the water wheel? The Seska or the Homids? Or another race? Dorian?
City at the Edge of the World.
We know that Vila and the Carry on girl had sex so does that mean there is a baby Vila or Vilaress out there on Vilaworld?
Deathwatch.
Tarrants brother has the chance to kill Vinny, why doesn’t he take it given what’s at stake, not just his life but the whole war thing, he didn’t hesitate to shoot the woman with the wacky hair or the assassin at the start.
What’s up with the camera guy, why is he bitching to his producer?
Tarrant becomes the new champion at the end of the episode but he bails so what happens now, do the planets fight all over again, where do they get another new champion from? What if the new one fails as well then all this was pointless.....
How do the staging areas work? They say the computer picks a location and that the location can be almost anywhere or any time and yet the door leads straight to the location, so is teleport involved? But The Liberator is the only one that has teleport right and the System of course so it can’t be that. Ok so is it a huge rotating series of areas that have already been built and each one contains the mock up of those places we saw? Maybe but then why does it stick Tarrant on the same ship his brother was on at the start of the episode? Was that ship handy and so the folks just rushed it in to the contest when they never expected a second contest to take place 3 minutes after the first one ended or is it something else?
Why does no one get a medical exam BEFORE taking on this contest. That would have screwed up Servalans plans right from the off. Also hasn’t Servalan got her own problems, why is she trying to invade two systems far outside what’s left of Federation space?
Who built Vinny, the same folks who built Avalon maybe? Android creation sure is good in the future and yet Muller’s one looked a bit crap and he was said to be the best, what gives?
Mission to Destiny.
The Liberator just makes it through the asteroid storm but THEN finds out the Tope box is empty. How the hell does it make it back through the storm when they have already said they lost almost all power on the first go through?
Why does Sara act like a little girl and cry “I won’t go, I won’t go” before throwing off her bracelet?
The Tope was originally still in the safe when the crew wake back up, but the guy says the safe can’t be opened without bio metrics and the code, so how was Sara planning to get the Tope out of there in the first place with all the crew knocked out?
Blake is cool with killing the buyers here but lets Travis and Servalan live time and again, he also as a side effect of this executes Sara as well.................
Duel.
God like beings? Really, what is this Star Trek?
Blake, no not the episode, that deserves it’s own QR, the man...
How many people have died because of Blake’s little crusade? A whole station full of them in Breakdown that’s for sure and how many more because time and again when he had the chance to kill Travis and/or Servalan he refused point blank. The whole alien war would never have happened without Travis. Has Blake caused more death than the Federation?
Games.
The whole ending. You know it makes no sense. I know it makes no sense. The writer knows and admits it makes no sense because it makes no sense.
Shadow.
Blake says he’ll give the guy out of Brush Strokes three years then he’ll come find him, what did he expect an ex dream head to do against the mafia and the entire Federation all on his own FFS? Three years!!! That guy wouldn’t have lasted three hours once Blake dumped him back down on Space City. Chalk up another death to Blake.
The Keeper.
How does Travis know by now where Star One is, he must know cause he takes off for it yet the fool didn’t tell him so how did he gain it’s location?
Voice from the Past.
Travis has the Liberator under his control. Finally after all this time we have won, goodbye Blake, oh wait then he gets the crew to teleport him down to the planet. Can you explain why?
At the end of the episode Blake remembers nothing that happened in it, do the crew tell him or leave him in the dark about the whole thing?
Horizon.
Why is the planet being run like an old British Colonial colony in the days of the Raj?
Trial.
Blake gets a boat load of people killed here including the guy out of Corrie, Nyder, the female who uses too much hair gel, and a stack of others but he also makes sure Travis goes free, as a result of his actions, resulting in the future deaths of many more people. Nice going “hero” Guess the death of Gan didn’t take too long for him to get over after all did it? Ditto the rest of the crew as they all have a laugh at the end at Vila’s expense.
The Web.
Blake as usual takes the moral high ground here, yet he can’t afford to do this, on top of which like Avon said these are what you are trying to save. Blake, you are an idiot!!
Spacefall.
The Liberator is assumed to have been in a war but a war with whom? The System? But it’s a System ship so rebels maybe stole it, yet why is it in perfect condition when the London finds it?
Did the rebels abandon the ship or are their dead bodies still onboard, we know there aren’t any on the flight deck.....
Wouldn’t this war be taking place pretty close to Earth since that’s where the London left from and has been travelling what 3/4 months?
Isn’t this still Federation space?
If Federation space goes all the way out to Star One then how can the Federation not know what’s going on out here or for that matter about the System?
Also are the crew of the London Federation people or not, they make it seem like they are independent contractors that are only doing this for money, hence the talk of dumping the prisoners out an airlock and claiming the pay. Yet there are talk of inquiries so which is it?
Come to that why send people to Cygnus in the first place, just kill them and save a long trip since the so called penal colony is nothing of the sort, it’s just a dumping ground.
Why would Avon a white collar criminal have been sent to Cygnus, wouldn’t he have been better suited being memory wiped and put back into place in one of the Domes? Come to that wouldn’t that approach work on all of them?
Does Blake think that his lawyer let him down or sold him out since he doesn’t know he and his wife have been murdered by the guy out of Revenge of the Cybermen, guess that’s two more deaths on Blake......
Gan’s limiter doesn’t seem to stop him taking action here, why is that?
Blake’s little rebellion gets at least ten prisoners killed. A taste of what’s to come I guess.
The prisoners are portrayed as underdogs and good guys, yet in truth how many are violet murderers that deserve this life sentence?
Bounty.
Space pirates that dress like Arabs....
A 630 year old car that still runs....
659 year old records that still play....
A joker in exile that a real ruthless Federation would have just killed long ago....
Assassin.
Whoever thought a 80 year old First Doctor look a like would make a good slave and sell for space credits in the first place?
Why don’t the gang kill Cancer once they have him under their control, ( they don’t know at this point he’s a fakeout.... ) It’s not like any of them haven’t killed before and it is the logical and smart thing to do given that he has a contract on them......
The Assassin say that she thought Avon was supposed to be the clever one, has she not seen or heard his track record? He got caught trying to defraud a bank, set up by his GF who was working to take him down, got the best ship in space blown to hell, let Travis and Servalan live many times when he could have killed them, almost got the crew killed again when he thought he could use an asteroid as cover and he got conned by Dorian and nearly eaten by a Sea Devil. Whoever thought Avon was clever?
Animals.
Justin’s.......... eyes.........
Justin says that was a terrible war ( talking about the end of series 2/start of series 3... ) making us think it lasted years, in fact it lasted no more than three hours, how the hell did the Federation have time to set up a research team to look for ways of winning a three hour war?
Servalan drugs Danya and it’s a truth drug so why wasn’t her first question to Danya where is your secret base?
Gold.
Why is Vila all but written out of this episode? An episode about STEALING!
How many good people do the gang kill on Xerox while trying to steal the gold?
What would the gang have done with all that money anyway, they had riches on the Liberator and never did anything with those, why now is money so important? Even Soolin gets turned on by it ( “That’s a LOT of cash....” )
Avon laughs at the end cause he can see the funny side but really it’s not that funny, like the others say, the gang risked their lives for nothing ( and murdered a lot of people.... ) and made Servalan a nice pile of cash as well. In other words following Avon has once again lead them in to a mess. How is he still in charge?
The Way Back.
Why does it seem like there is a widespread outside opposition to the Federation hence why they can’t just kill Blake or even infect him with a disease, don’t they control totally at this point?
How was a Freedom Party even able to run if the state controls everything?
A society that is state controlled, monitored by cameras everywhere, all movements are tracked, all conversations are recorded at all times and where it’s illegal to go outside. That’s crazy. A world like THAT could never exist, right? ( stares in 2020....... )
And there you have it, maybe not as pint sized as advertised but questions have been raised nonetheless. But now for the reason question.
Do YOU have the answers?
submitted by LuckyDuck99 to Blakes7 [link] [comments]


2020.11.09 18:24 Pristine-Engine4388 I AM UNEARTHING A BURIED TALE OF MURDER, CORRUPTION AND HEROICS (STORY 1 PART 1)

Every year, people go missing, never to be seen alive again.
One minute there and the next they are gone.
To make matters worse. Every year a handful of those cases never yield any real explanation or culprit to blame for why this person vanished from the face of the earth.
But what if there was... and it was and is still being covered up?
Over the next few months, I will be attempting to expose a near 14 year cover up of murder, personal heroics and police corruption.
The ‘higher ups’ of the country would rather the efforts of these people be buried along with the murkiest of murky secrets. Institutionalised corruption of mid to high-ranking police officers in state departments located in the south-west region of the united states.
Around 14 years ago, a clandestine group of violent criminals was formed and over the course of 6 years they set up a network human trafficking, murder for hire, violent extortion, kidnapping and torture sites.
They operated for years, killing over 700 people. Including children, families and anyone who dared to try thwart their operation.
You may have already seen a brave young girl post her own account on this site detailing her traumatic encounter with this certain group people resulting in the horrible demise of her friend.
The Link to her story is here... Olivia Matthews Story
The outspokenness of it inspired me to help tell the other stories out there, that need to be told but can’t be.
It looked bleak for the future and safety of people in the united states but if not for the efforts of a determined FBI Agent who wouldn’t let his gut feeling go to waste, a Cybercrime expert who went to the darkest places on the dark web, an eyewitness who was betrayed by the police but still managed to submit a statement before it was too and one brave undercover officer who lived ate and slept among these group of psychotic monsters in order to bring them down.
The group itself, named ‘The Swarm’, still has members at large even to this day but they do not have the power and influence they did in the late 2000s. Now, the remaining members retreated to the Mexican border where they reportedly pose as Coyotes to traffic refugees for cash. However, a lot of intelligence from that area say the gang are bitches for the Cartel. Protection runs, hired muscle etc.
The evidence, that each of the individual statements and efforts of the 4 people mentioned, has been suppressed for years as it reveals the reason the gang were able to stay at large for so long was the assistance of corrupt police officers so as high as commissioner status.
The white house submitted a motion to have the findings of the investigation stricken from public record to avoid the U.S. citizens losing faith in their local police departments. Unfortunately, this means the brave sacrifices of the aforementioned 4 get swept under the rug with the rest of it. I refuse to let this happen. Why would I do that? You may ask.
Over my years on this planet, I haven’t been the most successful person. All my school reports would describe me as an awkward student that ‘didn’t play well with others’ as well as the usual ‘good work but could do better’. I was an underachiever. Last pick in gym, first pick for the bullies. My parents threw thousands at therapists and tutors.
My father would look me up and down at meal times with a genuine confusion about the creation in front of him, wondering if I was even his son. A hard-working engineer who for 54 years came home in sweat and oil for the better part of 80 hours a week. Only for him to come home and find his lump of a son glued to his pc, not a football. My mother was a kind woman who gave me chance after chance during my phase of trying to ignite my life, whilst blocking out my father's frustrated tyranny against me, with class a stimulants and narcotics. She would rebel against my father, claiming that I was trying to be better and I would prove him wrong soon. I never did. I was a disappointment to both my parents in entirely different ways. Either way, they are both at peace now. A joining grave plot next to the old chapel located on the country roads of our rural Virginian town. Fittingly Its where they started married life in 1975. Paying for two twin marble headstones with a white limestone gravel bedding was the least I could do for my parents. I pay a team of florists to replenish the gravesites on a monthly basis.
They were good people. My father worked his hands to the bone to make sure we were fed, clothed and didn’t get rained on while we slept.
My mother always tried to see the best in me. She encouraged the gifts and interests I did have and maybe I wouldn’t be sat here about to tell the story I am had she not have nurtured and persevered.
Father and I ended on better terms. When, the cancer started to eat away at his brain, Ironically, he became less angry, less disappointed. By this point I believe he, and my mother, had accepted me for who I was. My mother passed one year after my dad from a stroke.
You might be wondering what on earth my family has to do with this. Nothing really. But this brief anecdote symbolises my motivation for doing what I'm about to do. People give their lives each and every day for people to help make the world a better, safer place. My parents did that.
They spent years arguing, at each other's throats, over my behaviour and how my life was turning out. On the brink of divorce, they could have split and gone their own ways but they didn’t. They stuck around and gave me stability.
Their heroics would may seem small in the grand scheme of the events described above but I honestly think that I would have been swinging from a rope or bleeding out in a bathtub had I not had the parents that I was blessed with. I never told them that. Ill regret that for the rest of my life.
That is their story. I am going to tell four more.
As I wasn’t a soccer player or a handyman, I become more and more immersed in the world of computer programming. By 17 I could break down the backdoor of any company's web directory to access their personal files.
Over the past 10 years, I’ve made a morally questionable living off my skills. Setting up phishing programmes, virus blackmails, Identity fraud etc. I used this money to support my parents with their medical bills as the end came near.
Over the years, I have made a lot of enemies as you can imagine but I’ve made just as many allies too and now we as a group are looking to break open this conspiracy so the American public can appreciate the efforts of 4 heroic men who sacrificed their careers, sanity, lives and family to bring down the most violent criminal enterprise since the Manson family. We are using are skills and contacts to hack our way into the FBI Evidence Archives.
Over the course of the next few weeks, I will look to publicise the detailed Log of Joe Clayton, FBI Undercover and Sensitive Operations Unit. He integrated himself in the depths of The Swarm to obtain evidence of high-level links between the organisation and corrupt police officers.
The detailed statement of Liam Brooks, the eye witness to a triple execution who was betrayed by the local police. He is being missing for 12 years with no trace but his logged evidence was submitted before his disappearance. This helped the FBI strengthen their case establishing the gang's relationship with local law enforcement.
The diary of a cyber-crime expert, Dave Peterson. A self-employed contractor utilised by the FBI to help search for high profile missing persons on the deep web. The Swarm made a lot of money by torturing and murdering captives on encrypted online sites in return for Bitcoin.
As the case in each story, The Swarm do not take trying to derail their operation lightly and there were consequences for each person. Their deaths will not go uncelebrated. I need to gather a few extra information before I can publish the three evidential stories.
So, Let's start with Agent William ‘Bill’ Johnsons story.
Using my skills with a tor browser and my ability to construct a pretty badass Botnet. I was able to recover files on previous investigations, internal depositions and criminal interview tapes, to construct the following version of events.
In 2006, there were a large string of disappearances in the southwest region of the united states. A cross state epidemic of unsolved violent crime across Florida, Virginia, Georgia and Louisiana.
People of all ages, mainly women and young girls, would go missing from their local areas. Some would be last seen making their way home from a place of work, only to have their cars found abandoned at the side of the road by a dog walker on a stroll the following morning.
More often than not though, the subject would be deemed missing after the family of the victim would start to become concerned after they failed to attend work for a shift or an important appointment.
A deputy from the local sheriff department would be called out to complete a welfare check. They would always find the door kicked in with obvious signs of a struggle. This would be followed by weeks of appealing and searching before all of a sudden, the body would turn up in some horrific mutilated state. Dumped in some river or marshland, usually in an entirely different State to the kidnapping. Sometimes they even found bodies in Mexico. Authorities were baffled.
As the murders crossed state lines, The FBI took over the case. The bodies would have several different lacerations, burns and punctures. All bodies showed signs of sexual trauma in some degree, there were no exceptions to this factor however autopsies always revealed a different cause of death. The FBI had profilers working day and night trying to build up a specification of the UNSUB for law enforcements and the general public to look for, as they believed it was the work of a serial killer partnership. It was rare, but it did happen.
The BSU at Quantico even sent a team out to Texas to interview Elmer Wayne Henley.
A convicted serial killer and sex offender who, under the wing and guidance of Dean Corll aka The Candyman, raped and murdered around 28 young boys.
The behavioural scientists spent over 49 hours over the course of 2 months picking the brain of such sexual sadists trying to build an idea of the sort of person who would commit these types of offences.
Much like Clarice Starling picked the brain of Doctor Lector to help understand Buffalo Bill in the classic 1991 Oscar winning film, The Silence of the Lambs.
It was fruitless though, something was missing.
Until one day, a victim that was retrieved mutilated and still had their skin still present. Sometimes, they weren’t and apparently there were a lot of seasoned pathologists who couldn’t stomach the autopsy. The victim was found with all limbs intact but had shown a harrowing degree of sexual assault. The cause of death was a deep laceration to the trachea. Victim died of Asphyxiation.
The turning point of the investigation was a burn mark on the upper thigh and buttocks. A brand.
It was lacking in detail but with the help of the correct equipment it was clear. It was a butterfly. The symbol looked like a carrot shape with obscenely big ears for wings and then surrounded by a circle outline.
The image had been tattooed on to the victim, using an iron stencil, heated up to 270c. This had been pressed into the subjects steaming and blistering flesh causing a permeant scar matching the stencil. The BSU claimed it was because the killers now wanted to ‘own and possess’ their victims.
On March 2007, an Agent going by the name of Bill Johnson disputed the dual serial killer theory. He was heavily disputed and despite the damage it did to his credibility, he persevered. He went back through the archives of evidence, asked for bodies to be re-examined and upset a lot of families by asking for graves to be dug up so he could look for signs of burn marks on the bodies. He theorised that the murders were in fact being committed not by a man or a pair, but by a gang. He strongly believed that this was the work of a growing network of traffickers and that the girls and kids being taken were to be sold and traded off. This explained the consistency of sexual abuse in all the victims. The branding was also another tell-tale sign of sex traffickers. Those types of gangs refer to their women as ‘Livestock’ hence the brand. Also, it was rare that serial killers murdered such a wide range of ages, genders, races and sizes.
However, the one snag on his theory were the causes of death. They were a hard sell. The level of brutality wasn’t consistent with most trafficking gangs.
However, Agent Johnson had a gut feeling these weren’t your standard pimps.
Going back through the archives he found a case back in March 2006, around the time the cases believed to be linked to this gang, there was an incident where two young boys were out playing on their bikes.
Around 2.34pm they went missing. Bikes left on the roadside at the scene. The family were a wealthy couple.
The father was a CEO of a chain of Distribution centres in Atlanta. Mother a successful Psychotherapist.
They offered 100,000 USD for any information leading to the return of their two boys.
2 weeks passed with no sign. Local Police main suspect was a former business associate of the father, as their professional relationship took a sour turn a few months back, but that would soon be ruled out.
On the morning of the 15th day missing, the couple opened their mail box to find a parcel inside.
The contents of the parcel were every parents' worse nightmare.
Inside they found one toe and one finger from each of the boys. There was also a Memory stick.
On the stick, they found a video file around 14 seconds long. The video was apparently very disturbing displaying the two boys sat on a grubby old couch in what looked like a basement or storage unit.
They bound and gagged with wild pleading eyes being embraced by a man wearing a creepy rabbit mask.
Two other men were in the video who appeared to also be wearing masks. Their heads weren’t shown in the videos view but they both held tools.
One held a pair of bolt cutters over the wrist of the child on the left, whilst the other held a drill close the other kids eyeball, revving the drill whilst the kid's eyes bulged at the deadly power tool in profound terror.
It was hard to know which of them spoke due to the masks being worn but the voice instructed the family to pay 1 million dollars for the quick and painless death of the children. Failure to pay would result in another package every day.
The couple gave the police a week to try track down the kids but after the mother had to open the 6th parcel, she begged her husband to pay the money.
They did and the bodies were found 3 days later in a wooded area close to the family home. Both boys were killed by an opiate and tranquillizer overdose. The father was advised to identify the bodies alone.
Agent Johnson continued to try make the pieces fit and as he syphoned through the evidence, he found a lead. On the video the man holding the bolt cutters extends his arms to place the metal clamp around the child's arm. In doing so, his shirt sleeve retracts, revealing a tattoo on the wrist in the shape of circled butterfly.
The two cases were connected. He knew it but he just needed to corroborate it.
He was one man pushing the trafficking angle against a whole department who were looking for a pair of sadistic rapists. His credibility was shot, career faltering and he was cut off from the rest of the department.
There was only one guy who stuck by him in this period of time and that was his long-time partner Agent Danny Rodriguez. The two had worked together since Rodriguez had joined the bureau from Albuquerque PD from the Homicide department.
He was the only one who believed Bill could be right. He respected Johnsons opinions and decided the fact he was ruining his career for this one hunch meant he was certain on it.
The pair began to become the laughing stocks of Quantico. The two men had questioned a pair of highly distinguished agent’s profile of the killer and the cliquey nature of the Bureau meant they were completely and utterly alienated.
They were given the cold assignments for their trouble and for 4 months they worked long hours going over witness statements from 10 years ago, going back through hours of archived evidence and travelling over 2500 miles a week, living on nothing but Starbucks and Red Bull.
But as Irony and fate would have it, this is where the plot twist came. In August 2005, A young boy by the name of Kyle Taylor, aged 5 years old, went missing whilst on a family vacation to visit relatives in Atlanta. It was a particularly ghastly crime.
The boy had wandered away from the group of adults at a local shopping market at around 1.34pm in the afternoon. An eye-witness statement had said that they saw a man dressed in dark clothing with jet black hair had being leading the boy around the corner of the left side of the building. The witness noted the man was putting on a pair of gloves as they walked round the corner. They noted this as odd due to the weather in Atlanta that day as hitting the mid 90s that day. They didn’t think anything of it at the time until a few days later when the body of Kyle Taylor was found on the local railway track. The level of physical and sexual abuse inflicted on Kyle made this one of the most high-profile cases in the state of Georgia. An autopsy revealed he had been killed after he was run over by a train. Prior to his death, Kyle had been severely beaten with what the coroner deduced to be a blunt object with corners, most likely a brick or cinder block, to the point his skull had multiple fractures. He had severe tears and splinters detected inside his body from what was likely a tree branch or long wooden object forced up inside him. The autopsy revealed he had 7 fingers broken and had paint thrown into his face before his death.
After what was likely over 3 hours of trauma and agony, he was left for dead in, what I hope, an unconscious state on the tracks where he was eventually hit by a locomotive cutting his body in half.
The details of the case were released to the public and the locals were furious wanting justice for the obviously devastated parents. Knowing the pain and suffering the Taylor boy went through when just a few hours earlier he was being passed a freshly scooped ice cream by his doting mother whilst he sat on his daddy's shoulders.
There were a few harsh minded folks who blamed the parents for leaving their child and allowing him to be taken by such a sadistic individual. This made the trauma the pair were going through that much worse. Despite TV appeals, News coverage, and the Atlanta Police Department interviewing every registered sex offender in the area, there were no solid leads.
They had DNA evidence but no matches in the system. Eventually the case became cold and was forgotten as the city of Atlanta moved on from this horrific crime.
Johnson and Rodriguez were brought in by the APD in march 2007, after appeals from the Parents to help finally solve the case and find Justice for their little Kyle.
They came in and re-examined the profile that was done by the local police department. They had been looking for a man who knew the boy hence Kyle left with him so easily. The police spent most of the time with their prime suspect tag on Kyles uncle. He was apparently sick on the day of the murder and didn’t attend the Lenox Square Market on that day. Johnson and Rodriguez went over the statements of Kyles uncle and they didn’t think he fit the profile of the killer.
They deduced the police were under pressure to find a guilty party by how outraged the public had become. Ultimately, this meant the police had blinkers on when looking for the perp. The two feds knocked up a second profile of the killer.
Likely a local, having known the area well enough to know where he could take Kyle without being seen and where he could do what he needed to without being disturbed.
They decided he was likely watching the family rather than being opportunistic due to how well he snuck him out the shopping centre without being noticed by too many people.
They decided the check security CCTV from areas around the relative's home, looking for a man matching the description of the witness statement sculking around scouting the family's movements that day.
This is where the huge break in both cases came. A hardware store security cam caught a large man and a small boy matching the UNSUBs and Kyles description.
The significance is the store is in the total opposite direction of the route they took according to the witness statement.
The police originally decided the UNSUB had taken Kyle east, the quickest way to the rail road tracks but when there was nothing on CCTV, they assumed he’d bundled him into a car.
A search of Kyles uncle car yielded Kyles DNA which he plausibly had claimed was from a trip to ‘The Georgia Dome’ two days prior to his disappearance.
The rest of the family corroborated his version of events but as far as the police and public was concerned, it was just fuel to the fire.
Johnson and Rodriquez re-interviewed Kyles parents. They informed them that during the trip to the Georgia Dome two days earlier Kyle had wandered off a few times. He’d not gone far and was re-called as soon as they realised. He was apparently a bit of a monkey like that.
The Agents now had a better timeline of what actually happened.
The UNSUB had been watching Kyle. Not just for the day of the murder but extremely likely on the trip to the Dome two days earlier. He didn’t take Kyle on that day though.
He waited for the trip the market and took him on a dummy route before doubling back on the actual route with no traffic cameras.
The Agents took the descriptions of the UNSUB from the eye witness accounts and went back through CCTV cameras in the Area of the Georgia Dome.
They found around 11 men who matched the descriptions and biometrics of the UNSUB.
However, only one of them was once registered as living near the scene of the murder in the past 2 years thus having an extensive knowledge of the area and knowing how to avoid CCTV detection. Here was the final piece though, that one person once worked at the railway depot.
His name was Damian Ramsey.
They spoke to his former foreman down at the railway depot. The depot was scrapped as a place to unload freight in 2006 due to a track drainage issue that didn’t seem financially beneficial to rectify and the depot was moved to Hannover, West Virginia. The foreman recounted that Ramsey was never liked by his colleagues and he saw why. He was always late, usually came in high, was suspected of stealing money from co-workers and to be frank, never really seemed completely genuine.
Johnson had his man. He fit the description from the eye-witness statements, he was in the area on both occasions where the family ventured out on trips, he had knowledge of the area and knowledge of the murder scene and that it would be abandoned with no one to disturb him and he also seemed to tick a lot of boxes on what criminal profilers call the Psychopathy checklist.
They tracked him down on May 19th 2007 and brought him in for questioning.
The transcript from their interview is on the next part.
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2020.11.07 16:07 Boop108 Live sex caught in camera

This article is illustrated with a lot of film stills. If you would like to see the illustrated version click here.
https://36toesproductions.medium.com/peter-solletts-raising-victor-vargas-eeb247f611ed
In an effort to simplify the human experience it is common to claim that there are only two emotions, fear, and love. Oprah and Dr. Phil popularized this idea and taught that all other emotions are an outgrowth of these two emotions. It is not entirely inaccurate, but the problem lies in the word love. Fear is easy to define in concrete terms. We have a specific organ that is in charge of fear, our amygdala. When it is activated it sends a cocktail of norepinephrine and cortisol into our bloodstream and sets up a choice between fight, flight, or freeze.
If you turn off the amygdala and look for its opposite you won’t find love. There is no hormone or gland that causes love, but what you will find is trust. If norepinephrine and cortisol are fear, oxytocin and serotonin are trust. Love is a cultural idea that can be constructed once trust is established.
Each of the adolescent characters in Raising Victor Vargas has difficulty with trust and as a result, they are unsure of what they want. Their lack of life experience draws them toward sex because sex is the simplest, least abstract element in the whole relationship equation. It is easier to want sex, pursue sex, and have sex than to deal with loneliness and a need for intimacy.
Victor is caught up and confused by these desires for sex and intimacy. He postures by the public pool trying to project confidence and swagger. Then he sees Judy. She is tall and beautiful and the boys in the neighborhood see her as unattainable. Victor is unfazed and vows to have her.
Judy is an edgy young woman who mostly wears a scowl. She sits by the pool swatting men away like flies. Victor approaches her with a self-conscious saunter. A stereotype of an adolescent in action. Judy tries to dismiss him but he is agile with his banter. Still, he can not get through to her. Victor and Judy are enacting a ritual that allows for a first tentative exchange. It is a first foray toward intimacy but it is limited by a complete lack of trust. The two can exchange words but they do not permit each other to enter inside any of their boundaries. The walls are up and the two of them are just peeking from parapets.
The youth that populates Victor’s neighborhood is only just becoming self-aware. They try to keep up an appearance of tough independence but these are not gangbangers or thugs. They present a rough exterior to buoy themselves in a rough neighborhood. The whole concept of “cool” is the idea of not being emotionally available or expressive. You are not easily rattled or seduced. Each character maintains a facade of cool in order to keep everyone safe from emotional harm.
Victor lives with his grandmother and his younger sister and brother. Each of them struggles to find their own way forward. The most difficult and entrenched of the group is the grandmother. She is afraid of everything. She is Catholic and authoritarian. If she had her way she would keep all three children imprisoned in the house and only allow them to leave on Sundays for church. Catholicism is predicated on humans being sinners. We are not to be trusted. Humans are dangerous creatures prone to temptation and distraction. If you are afraid of people the only rational response is a hefty, unrelenting dose of law and order and grandma lays it down with an iron fist. She has no faith in her children to make “good” choices, she does not trust them and so insists on controlling her children’s every move.
The film was directed by Peter Sollett in 2002 and written by Sollett and Eva Vives. It is an expansion of a previous autobiographical short called Five Feet High And Rising that Sollet and Vives released two years prior. The cast for both films was largely made of kids from the actual projects where Sollett grew up on the lower east side of Manhattan. The film requires a lot of its two leads, Victor Rasuk and Judy Marte. Although untrained they manage to present the necessary transparency so we can see inside them even if they can not. We see the thinness of their facades and hope they will have the courage to lower them.
Raising Victor Vargas was filmed on location, where Sollett grew up. The camera is mostly hand-held but is kept steady enough so as not to draw undue attention. The film feels raw but like its characters, it is more sophisticated than what we see on the surface. Sollett wants us to feel the way the characters feel, suspicious, and on guard.
The lack of trust displayed in the film indirectly implies what life in their neighborhood is like. It is a place where a woman is obliged to act visibly angry as she walks down the street or she will be assailed with aggressive invitations and comments. Even with a tough display, she will still be solicited. Just as women have to walk a gauntlet so do the young men who are glared at and tested by other young men. The whole neighborhood fears young men, distrusts young men. In such an atmosphere it is difficult for intimacy to find a foothold.
We are shown how different characters react to this atmosphere. Judy’s younger brother Carlos wears his heart right on his sleeve for everyone to see. He is vulnerable but he avoids all the game playing by being honest and direct. He comes off as awkward and a little needy but he finds a partner in the end.
Judy seems most directly aware of the specific need for trust. Victor’s transformation from lothario to earnest suitor is gradual and happens at least partially without his knowledge. However, Judy’s transformation is deliberate. She makes a choice to trust Victor. When they have their climactic breakthrough they have a long hug before their first kiss. It is the hug that matters. The hug is the concrete result of their trust.
Raising Victor Vargas is the kind of film that makes you miss the characters when it’s over. It's a compelling film, well crafted and well told.
Epilogue
On the strength of Raising Victor Vargas, I decided to watched Solett’s next film Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist. This second film came out in 2008, six years after the first. Raising Victor Vargas was made on an $800,000 dollar budget, Nick and Nora’s Infinite Play List cost $10,000,000. Nick was played by Michael Cera, and Nora by Kat Dennings, both well-established actors. The script was based on a novel.
Raising Victor Vargas was essentially a drama, where Nick and Nora’s Infinite Play List was more of a teen rom-com. Their respective goals as films were not the same, but as a film, Nick and Nora’s Play List is far less successful, even on its own terms. The characters are hard to understand. Their motivations are unclear. Michael Cera plays the exact same awkward and nervous teen he plays in all of his films, and the glamorous and beautiful Kat Denning is supposed to be a girl next door.
The richness and sincerity of Raising Victor Vargas are lost in Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist. Having a huge crew and truckloads of lights can do a lot for a film but in Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist it only serves to make the film look like hundreds of other Hollywood productions churned out like so many Big Macs. The polish afforded by the budget just results in the film feeling ordinary and banal.
There is nothing wrong with having a big budget but when Solett had a small one he used what he had and met the challenges of independent filmmaking with creativity. $10,000,000 dollars doesn’t stop you from being creative but it can grease the wheels in such a way that you glide easily into a comfortable mainstream of mediocrity.
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2020.11.07 05:22 Cstar1312 Live sex caught in camera

I apologize in advance because this post is L O M G and oddly punctuated, but here goes. Feel free to ask for details if you're confused
I (23 nb afab) moved to a new apartment about two and a half months ago, and the complex matched me with three girls who had been there for some time. We'll call them A (21f), S (19f), and O (f, age unknown but over 18 and younger than me). Within the first week, I was already having trouble with them completely ignoring covid guidelines and throwing ragers until 3am, and it became clear that most of their friends were alcoholic douchebags. One such friend is M (20m). I considered moving to another unit within the complex, but upon advice from family and friends, I decided to stay and stick it out for the remainder of my inescapable year-long lease in the hopes that things will calm down. (I promise this part of the story becomes relevant later).
On or about Sep. 4, O adopted a toy-breed puppy from a friend or family member who breeds them. The dog was freshly weaned from mother's milk and did not initially display any maladaptive behaviors other than lack of potty training (also relevant). Everybody loved him until he became more of a responsibility than a toy.
*since his arrival, I can count on my hands the number of times the dog has been walked or even taken on the grass to relieve himself. Even then, A, S, or O's boyfriend is the one to take him out. O really only walks him to and from the parties she regularly attends. I swear that O must've gotten him an instagram account before getting him a leash. Her rationale is that because she did not register the dog and is not paying "pet rent" or fees to the complex, she will be in trouble with building staff if she is caught outside or on security cameras with him. *instead, the dog has one or two paper pads that he is expected to use reliably as a "plan a" instead of a "plan b". He maybe uses it 1/10 or 1/20 times. Every other time, he has either sneaked off to pee/poop in front of our doors or reluctantly let loose in front of us when he can't hold it that long. *each and every time this happens; O snatches him up, forces his head toward the accident, verbally scolds him (usually shouting some variant of "why would you do that? You KNOW you're supposed to use your pad!), sits him on the pad and scolds him to "go right HERE" with the same exact tone of voice (thereby confusing the shit out of him because tone and gestures are the parts he understands, not the words she says), hits him hard enough to be heard through 2 sets of closed doors and a tv, and then locks him in a carrier cage that he is rapidly outgrowing for an arbitrary amount of time. Lately I've started timing it; most of the time he's in "puppy jail" for 20-30 minutes. Last night he was forgotten about for AN HOUR AND FIFTY TWO MINUTES, and I could do nothing. After two months of this, he doesn't cry like he used to. *this increasingly frustrates O, leading to an escalating cycle of punishment > aggression/misbehavior > punishment > more a/m > etc. *sometimes they don't even clean after his accidents. I don't mind picking up the slack for them, especially if I can do it in secret and save the dog from being punished for it, but I've stepped in one too many forbidden chocolate drop or lemonade spill that they were going to "get to in a bit". *she is also increasingly frustrated that the dog appears to be bonding to everyone except her, and especially that he is particularly affectionate with me. The dog rarely spends time with her voluntarily, and is sometimes shamed for normal social behaviors when he does. This came to a head one day when she saw me petting the dog and allowing him to kiss me on the face. In front of all her friends, she asked me if i was trying to make out/have sex with the dog. *she set a list of rules specifically for me, all but eliminating our time together, but has since softened. She still gets jealous when he's with me and sometimes snatches him up when he chooses me over her if given the option, is too calm and relaxed with me/falls asleepon my lap, etc, but also finds ways to blame me when he randomly starts biting me (which most of the time happens when i haven't even touched him, when he wants to play but has no toys, or can’t decide what is or isn’t a toy and sees human flesh as fair game). It should be noted that I have never interacted with the dog any more or less than the 20+ others who regularly handle him, sometimes even violently. M has done things such as carrying him by the neck, hoisting him as far up as he can reach, and threatening to drop him. O watches and laughs. M also has a cat that he confessed to hitting, and hasn't started hitting his 1 year old daughter YET but confesses that he will. I have more details that confirm how... not great of a person he is, but this post is already getting long. *she frequently leaves him alone in a dark room for hours at a time, and only allows S, A, or her friends to let him out for their own entertainment. Their justification is that he "needs to learn how to be left home alone for hours," even though he never actually is alone since i'm here in quarantine while they party like it's pre-covid (eventually ⅔ tested positive and quarantined for a day or two before hosting/going to even more parties. I had to isolate from the only 3 people in my social circle/local family during an already-dark period in my life, during which time i worried about whether I inadvertently infected family with pre-existing conditions. Having an animal in the house was a saving grace for me, so O’s actions re: me and the dog stung extra hard). *they all call him "fat boy" for the normal paunch of a growing puppy’s belly, even though he is at a healthy weight and size. *they refuse to neuter because they eventually plan to breed him with other dogs, but then blame many of his behavioral issues on his testes *O's friend, we'll call her T, is similarly unprepared for the responsibilities of pet ownership and resents our dog for the “annoying noises” he makes at play (squeak/crunch toys, the occasional bark or grunt, etc), yet plans to buy one of his sisters when she is born/weaned.
The actions I've taken: *google everything I possibly could about dog ownership, hoping against hope to find some justification for any of this and finding none *gently but firmly suggest to take him outside and offer to do it myself. A perfect example: when the three roommates and their friends caught him mid-accident and all started to scold him, i said something to the effect of "[dog's name], please do that when we TAKE YOU OUTSIIIIDE or on the pad when we can’t take you". O snapped back at me, "oh so do YOU wanna take the dog out?" I replied, as if she was honestly asking, "sure, I'd love to!". I couldn't at that moment because it was cold and rainy outside, but when the weather cleared up I never heard a word about it again. I secretly bought a leash of my own and snuck him out once or twice while O was out, but this is now impossible due to her new rules. *consult my brother, his spouse, and a few other trusted friends. After sifting through conflicting advice ranging from "just ignore it, it doesn't seem so bad" to "go to the cops and risk retaliation, if it were me i'd already have kicked their asses and gone to jail", to a few suggestions that I've already considered/tried. Came to the conclusion that I need to leave after all, but first have a discreet conversation with A, who I actually get along with fairly well. I talked it over with the apartment complex staff (a difficult thing to keep secret since O, S, and A are friends with like 3 staff members, one of whom has been in legal trouble for stalking and harassment and can easily abuse her power to find me once I leave), revealing only as much information as I could in order to not get them in trouble but still convey why I need to leave. I meet my new roommates this weekend, and pick up my new set of keys the next.
I can handle roommate conflicts, but not when an innocent creature's quality of life is used as a pawn in said conflicts. As an aspiring veterinarian/anthropologist, I cannot witness what I've witnessed and do nothing, but I also fear retaliation if I end up getting them in trouble, whether deserved or not. The worst part of it all is that I believe O and company genuinely love and care about the dog, but will not admit that they are in over their heads and might in fact be causing damage. Besides discussing this with A and involving complex staff/the aspca if that doesn't work out, I am completely lost. Do I have any just and reasonable course of action but to suddenly and quietly disappear from their lives forever?
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