How was Altair able to go into the real world?

2021.10.25 04:45 MukiTensei How was Altair able to go into the real world?

And was it ever explained how/why a fictional world is born when it has enough recognition in the real world?
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2021.10.25 04:45 ZoolShop Satoshi Nakamoto's Bitcoin (BTC) stash is now worth over $60 billion - Now ranks as one of the richest people in the world

Satoshi Nakamoto's Bitcoin (BTC) stash is now worth over $60 billion - Now ranks as one of the richest people in the world submitted by ZoolShop to CoinTuta [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:45 My_name_is_Bot What is a bomb cyclone?

What is a bomb cyclone? submitted by My_name_is_Bot to RSSBot [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:45 vbcbandr Any word on Girard? Is he ok? What's our injury situation now that we are a whole 5 games into the season?

Girard? Seems to be fine?
Towes? Hopefully in the next week?
Pavel - Out for at least a month with a LBI
Nuke - Out weeks or months with a wrist injury
Matteau - Out very long term
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2021.10.25 04:45 Sufficient-Method863 🐕SamuraiFloki - Low marketcap gem, stealthlaunched few hours ago. Experienced dev team with an active community behind 💎

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2021.10.25 04:45 rouxsterz I wish my NFTs could be purchased with Shib. I launched my cookbook with recipes I’ll be adding to help fund the Foodtruck that will accept/burn Shiba with purchases. If anyone wants to support would help a ton. Just posted first recipe. Thanks shib fam! Even a link share on social would be amazing.

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2021.10.25 04:45 AlliTheInkCat should i replace anyone with crepe? if not then maybe tips on making my crepe stronger?

should i replace anyone with crepe? if not then maybe tips on making my crepe stronger? submitted by AlliTheInkCat to Cookierun [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:45 Jonny2881 Those of you who have a phobia of everyday objects, how do you deal with it?

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2021.10.25 04:45 BryDub This adv on Insta

This adv on Insta submitted by BryDub to thanksimcured [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:45 smoothcrimi Shiba Inu Beats the Market Cap of Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin, SHIB’s current market cap stands at around $16 billion.

Shiba Inu Beats the Market Cap of Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin, SHIB’s current market cap stands at around $16 billion. submitted by smoothcrimi to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:45 erer1243 Currently, it's October 25, 2021 at 03:45AM

Currently, it's October 25, 2021 at 03:45AM
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2021.10.25 04:45 ZoobBot 182406

This is the 182406th time I made this shitty comment. I hate this job.
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2021.10.25 04:45 papathanvxzvfzdx It’s so perfect, came in just how I wanted it!!

It’s so perfect, came in just how I wanted it!! submitted by papathanvxzvfzdx to awesome [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:44 svanapps ET Markets Cryptologue: Chaaipani founder Shruti Chaturvedi on how cryptocurrency can be a more inclusive asset class

ET Markets Cryptologue: Chaaipani founder Shruti Chaturvedi on how cryptocurrency can be a more inclusive asset class submitted by svanapps to CryptoToFuture [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:44 Acrobatic-Agent2087 My friend laughed his ass off when I said that I wanted to become an engineer

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2021.10.25 04:44 One-Challenge-9822 look at my teeth

look at my teeth submitted by One-Challenge-9822 to aww [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:44 aminecraftveteran Can I run elysium on a rtx 3060 ryzen 5 3600 and 12 gb of ram on a 2k monitor?

I am new to moding and already have a modpack but it looks like dovahkiin's dragon crap and it runs at a smooth 24 fps because I messed too much enbs. I know my pc can do better so I want to download elysium so I thought before I install the modpack I should ask people with more experience than me in mods.
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2021.10.25 04:44 Brave-Share5205 🚀PrinceShiba Next 100X BSC GEM 💎Launched on Pancakeswap | Low Market Cap | Stealth Launched | Join Now

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🔸The community we are building is everything to me, and the success of a token is in the communities hands. I want educated and bright people who enjoy memes
Contract: 0x28d718be9832806361f2ce99d7abd618e73fba80
Buy Now:
Renounced Ownership:
Liquidty locked:
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2021.10.25 04:44 Nellla21 Monstera Thai constellation not growing……Hi all I have had my Thai constellation since May this year and it has not grown, the new growth has been there for awhile and won’t come out. Any advice thanks

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2021.10.25 04:44 Zealousideal-Cow5721 Price/Value of 90s John Galliano?

Price/Value of 90s John Galliano? submitted by Zealousideal-Cow5721 to DesignerReps [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:44 fuckreddit06 Brave BIPOC liberate Bottega Veneta bags from the boutique.

Brave BIPOC liberate Bottega Veneta bags from the boutique. submitted by fuckreddit06 to antihatesubreddit [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:44 Itschaz1 Umm one of the rarest cards in the game out of a 82+ pack!!!!

Umm one of the rarest cards in the game out of a 82+ pack!!!! submitted by Itschaz1 to PackOpenerForFut22 [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:44 Tallerthanyoum8 You’ve heard of elf on the shelf

You’ve heard of elf on the shelf submitted by Tallerthanyoum8 to meme [link] [comments]

2021.10.25 04:44 mrmills_45 On Halloween, I Was Caught In The Middle Of An Unnatural Rivalry… [1/3]

Candy, laughter, scares, ghosts and ghouls.
Halloween, easily my favorite holiday of the year. It has all the things I love most in life. Sweets, costumes, and the excuse to be someone else even if it is just for a night. Where fiction and reality can intertwine without it being weird.
I’m only thirteen, but it seems to me like a lot of people in my school want to pretend like they’re too old to trick or treat or something. It’s the cool thing now to go to Halloween parties and talk to girls or whatever they actually do. But for me, trick or treating will always hold a special place in my heart.
Luckily I had two friends who shared the same opinion on the matter. Carter and Aaron. I hadn’t known them all too long, only since the beginning of this current school year. But the three of us had gotten along pretty quick and decided that we’d all go out on the best night of the year together. None of us had cellphones yet, so we planned the whole thing at school during our lunch period.
I stood in the bathroom of my house, finishing painting on my fake blood that ran underneath my fangs. Wearing a cheaply made fabric cape and fangs, a little bit of makeup, and some contacts and I was a full-on vampire. It was more effort than most people my age put into their costumes anyway.
Carter, who was definitely the biggest of us three, had chosen to go as a brute zombie. His clothes all tethered and ripped, while also having fake bits of blood and bone painted on his exposed skin.
Then there was Aaron who so desperately wanted to go as a swamp monster. We practically begged the guy to dress up as a werewolf and complete the classic monster trio, but he refused.
“Dude, you can’t be serious, you look like you just jumped in a bucket of slime and then called it a day.” Carter teased. Snickering at Aaron as he revealed his look for the night to come.
“My mom spent three hours on this, I don’t wanna hear your complaining.” Aaron fires back, rolling his eyes at Carter.
“Three hours?” Carter blares. “Was she blindfolded the whole time?”
“Alright alright, I’m gonna get a headache from you guys before this night even starts. Let’s just go out, get some candy and have fun.” I step in, continuing the work on my fake blood touch-up.
“I’m using a pillowcase.” Aaron chimes in. “Gonna fill this thing to the brim.”
“A pillowcase?” Carter replies quickly. “I’m taking a frickin garbage bag!”
We discussed for a few minutes more. Going on about the route we’d take and the types of candy we wanted to score. I myself was more of a chocolate guru. Hershey’s, Reese’s, Snickers, 3 Musketeers. I wanted it all.
Carter and Aaron mostly agreed with me, with the exception of Carter constantly reminding me that sour candy reigned supreme. Even over chocolate, but everyone has their preferences I guess. His opinion was still wrong though.
The three of us finish the remaining little touches on our costumes, grabbing our various candy bags and whatnot before finally walking out the front door to the house and setting off into the lively environment that was my street on Halloween.
It wasn’t actually dark quite yet, although the sun was beginning to dim as it set. Leaving that perfect, fall-evening breeze to accompany the low light. Beautiful colored leaves blowing every which way.
Our plan was to head over to the more upscaled and snobby part of town. Most people there would just leave out multiple bowls of full-sized candy bars after a certain time when they didn’t feel like answering the door any longer. Which was all the more fortunate for us.
The only problem? Well, our area was poorly planned and structured quite strangely. Meaning that the shortest way to get to said snobby area was to cut through a near mile and a half long trail in the woods.
People in my town always told urban legends and tales of creatures, ghouls, and cryptids lurking in the woods. They definitely freaked me out as a small child for sure, but I was now old enough to understand it was all nothing more than a fiction that parents used to keep their young kids from running off and encountering something like a coyote.
But you see, most legends and stories always portray the non-human creatures as the bad guys. All the time with next to no exceptions, that’s where my town is different. Some claim to have seen creatures of the night throwing down like two drunk dads in a parking lot. The reasons they supposedly fight for are unknown.
Territory, food, dominance, and or just purely malice. All of them are not much more than one big conspiracy theory or tall tale. But what most people think is that while some of these beings are here to hunt, kill and maim us. The others are here to watch over us. To protect us from the ones who only want to cause us harm and pain.
As I said though, it’s nonsense. There were plenty of dangerous things in the woods without there being supernatural oddities and entities, some people just like to amp it up for the sake of excitement and fun. Which is entirely understandable.
“You’ll blend right in man,” Carter announces before bumping Aaron.
“Well… You’re not wrong.” I interject. Causing both Carter and I to snicker.
“Hey, you’re the one who’s going as a damn vampire, how creative. I’m pretty sure everyone and their mother thought of that one.” Aaron snaps at me from behind.
“Except my costume is the best out of all of them.” I deflect.
“I’m just saying that if we finish early we should go scare some of the little kids around the neighborhood,” Carter suggests with a proud smile.
“Yeah and then have their angry dads chasing after us?” I inquire rhetorically. “Use your head dude.”
“That’s part of the fun.” Carter fires back without much flair.
The three of us arrive at the entrance to the forest path. Standing there as nothing more than ants while the massive trees towered over us. Bushes, and all sorts of shrubbery making it nearly impossible to effectively see anywhere besides straight ahead. Especially as it got darker and darker outside by the minute.
Some of the trees were weirdly bent forward, almost like they were attempting to cover the path from sunlight. A phenomenon I didn’t remember being present last year.
I was a bit disappointed to see someone had taken it upon themselves to TP the front few trees a bit. As to why or how it made any sense? I don’t know. But it did get under my skin for some reason. Who the heck TP’s a forest?
“Jeez did a tornado run through here?” Aaron says, breaking the silence between the three of us as we stare in a shared feeling of unsettling awe.
“What’s with the toilet paper?” Carter quizzed. Taking one step forward.
“I.. I don’t know.” I reply, genuinely confused. “Let’s just keep going, we wanna be able to clean out the bowls before the other kids get there.”
“This seems kinda sketch not gonna lie,” Aaron interjects. “What was the point of TP-ing trees?”
“Like I said.” I huffed. “I don’t know, now come on let’s go.”
The three of us continue forward, beginning the path and taking short but deliberate strides. We didn’t let the strange unease ruin our excitement. But I would be lying if I said I wasn’t on edge. As to why? Well, that’s the mystery, I didn’t really have a legitimate reason. Toilet paper on trees isn’t really enough to justify this sort of emotion.
And although I’ve heard some horror stories of coyotes snatching up little kids, they were mostly cowards when it came to more normal-sized humans and the three of us were big enough to where I was confident we wouldn’t be bothered.
“Hey, so one question…” Carter declares. “For the both of you.”
“Yeah?” Aaron and I both reply simultaneously.
“You guys ever heard the story about the Ground Grabber?”
“Pffft!” Aaron immediately snorts in reverse, as if he were just blowing out a nose-full of liquid.
“Yeah, I won’t lie that’s a pretty stupid name.” I chime in. Failing to hold back a laugh of my own.
“You won’t think it’s stupid when you find out what he did.” Says Carter with a straight face. “My dad always told me that when he was a kid, he would always lurk in these very woods and around town.”
“Ooooh, spooky!” I tease sarcastically. “But that still doesn’t explain why it’s supposed to scare us… But it does explain why it’s failing.”
“Well maybe if you’d stop interrupting me I could keep going.” Carter snaps. “Anyway, they said he was a man who had been spliced with the DNA of multiple animals, mainly a groundhog. He was much taller and bigger than any man on the planet, strong and fast. My dad said people who messed with or disturbed the ground of natural areas like this would be hunted by him. He would follow them to their houses, to their place of work. No matter where they went he would find them and eventually get them. And then take them back to his tunnels underground, sometimes he’d dig his way into the sewers and kill maintenance workers. And those he didn’t would find the corpses of large alligators in the sewers as well, torn apart by something powerful and vicious.”
“Uhhh aren’t alligators pretty rare in this state?” Aaron interrupts. “I’ve only ever heard of one instance of there being alligators up here. Also, why would he dig his way into the sewers, sounds kinda stupid.”
“Because he’d be too big to fit in the manhole cover you dope! Now would you just have fun and enjoy the damn story? Jeez.”
“What? I can’t have fun AND point out your stupid logic? The Ground Grabber isn’t real man, your dad just didn’t want you digging holes in the backyard with his shovels.”
“Hey come at me all you want, but all I’m gonna say is you better stay on the path. Don’t litter and don’t start digging holes as you said.”
The two of them finish their bickering, we were just about halfway through the trail. The sun getting lower and lower by the second as I watch squirrels and rabbits scatter into the thick brush of the trees.
But as we walk along, Aaron suddenly freezes. Looking down to his right at something that clearly disturbed him. I hold up a hand and signal for Carter to hold up, attempting to get to the bottom of what it is that was bothering Aaron.
“Hey man, you alright?” I approach, trying to focus my gaze on whatever he was so fixated on. Failing to see what was holding him up at first.
“The hell?” Carter inquires, seemingly having spotted the same captivating sight before I had. Leaving me curious as to what it was.
But Aaron simply points a finger forward at the ground, just a few feet off the path. And I finally see what it is he was talking about.
Just right next to the edge of the path, sticking out from a bush was a shoe. It looked to be around a size thirteen, so I assumed it had belonged to a grown man. That in itself wasn’t too strange, loose shoes are more common than most people would realize. But what did get me was the thing next to it.
Less than a foot to the right of the shoe was a Jack O Lantern… Well, Lantern. It was turned on its side, a good chunk of its upper right area smashed to pieces and embedding the remaining plastic into the ground.
There was no blood, no corpse, or any other sign that someone was hurt. Perhaps it was a prank or decoration to scare kids who cut through here? It wasn’t like this was a secret route or anything. Plenty of people were aware of it.
“Okay, that’s kinda weird…” Aaron comments. Taking a step back while keeping his eyes fixated on the bush.
“Dude are you dumb? That’s obviously just a decoration. Did you forget what night it is?” Carter replies, although not sounding super confident about his claim.
“I’d probably just leave it alone,” I say, keeping my feet right where they were.
But Carter goes full throttle towards the bush, wanting to appear stronger in his conviction.
“Carter would ya just leave it alone,” Aaron calls out, trying to pull him back, only causing Carter to thrash forward out of his grip.
“What are you guys even scared for?” He teases further. “Especially you Garret.” He announces while pointing right at me. “Aren’t you always the one saying that monsters and ghosts are a bunch of BS?”
Frustrated, I fire back immediately.
“Well duh, I never said it proved there’s a frickin monster. Maybe it’s the leftovers of a mugging, don’t tamper with potential evidence.”
“Nerd.” Carter shoots back bluntly.
“Hey, you’re the weirdo who made up the stupid Ground Grabber. Sometimes it takes a lot of brainpower to be stupid.” I ramble, my eyebrows lowering.
“I think that’s a paradox…” Aaron interjects softly.
“Shut up!” I erupt, turning my head to face him.
Carter begins to laugh as he continues getting up close to the busted Jack O Lantern. His loud chuckles echoing throughout the forest.
But all of our bickering comes to a screeching halt when a blood-curdling roar booms from the trees off the path. It sounded like it came from deep within the woods but simultaneously close enough to nearly shatter our eardrums right then and there.
The sheer bass of it was terrifying as if a large grizzly had given everything it had to scare off a predator. As to what that predator would be? Well, I’m no expert. Perhaps an even bigger grizzly?
“You uh… You guys heard that right?” Carter whispers as if he is afraid that someone or something will hear him.
“We did, and it’s our cue to leave.” Aaron snaps in a similarly quiet tone.
“That had to be a bear right? I mean they don’t usually come this close to neighborhoods do they?” Carter inquiries, beginning to walk forward.
“We’re leaving,” I command. “Now, forget the Lantern, forget the stupid shoe. We’re going, come on.”
“Okay I know I know it’s scary but you guys are telling me that you don’t wanna see what that was all about?” Said Carter as he stands back up.
“No, because I’m not an idiot like y-” Aaron begins before being suddenly cut off.
A branch snaps not too far from behind the bush. None of us actually see the cause of it, but the sound is all too familiar. But it came off like it was a rather large one, far from a simple twig or thin stick.
The three of us decide that was more than enough evidence for our case to leave and immediately take off, bolting down the path with all of our trick or treating gear in hand. I myself don’t look back, but I could practically sense Carter turning his head multiple times to get a peek at whatever wild animal may or may not have been on our tail. Although it was admittedly stupid to run because if it had been a dangerous predator, we would’ve only invited it to chase us. We were behaving like prey.
“That was a bear, that was definitely a frickin bear I don’t care what either of you say.” Carter declares with a not up for debate tone.
“Would you shut your mouth!” I bark in an angry whisper. “If he doesn’t already hear our footsteps he’ll definitely hear your big mouth yapping!”
I see the opening to a road. Only about another sixty yards of running and we’d be free from the clutches of these woods. I don’t think I necessarily heard anything chasing us, thank god. But that didn’t change this sense of impending doom going on in my head. As if we were on an inevitable path to our deaths.
Regardless though, we do make it to the other side of the path. Granted the three of us were wheezing and struggling to catch our breaths. It was still a far more desirable situation than being attacked by whatever bear or large predator was lurking in those trees. Just last week online I read about some woman’s husband getting taken by a bear.
The three of us continue to stand at the end of the path hunched over, rapidly inhaling and exhaling as we attempt to regain our ability to keep going as normal.
“Let… Let’s just hurry up and start trick or treating.” I say continuing to huff and puff.
“What, and just go on like nothing happened? Somebody might’ve gotten eaten by a frickin bear!” Aaron growls at me after standing upright.
“We don’t know that!” I countered. Even doubting my own words as I speak. “There wasn’t any blood, guts, or anything that proves a stupid bear attack!”
“That doesn’t mean it didn’t happen either,” Carter adds.
“Okay, and what do we do? Go to the cops on Halloween night and tell them we maybe think someone got eaten by a bear because there was a shoe and a broken lantern? They’re gonna think we’re messing with them, some kids trying to have fun wasting their time.” I posit angrily.
“Tell them about the roar.” Informs Aaron.
“Yeah because I’m sure that will really help. Can we just forget it? It’s not even that big of a deal.”
“Seemed like a big deal when you were the first one to bolt.” Carter steps in.
“Jesus Christ Carter, do you ever shut up? We haven’t even started yet and you’re already giving me a headache!” I return furiously.
I can’t help but give Carter a hellish glare. Staring him down like an angry mother would to her disobedient child. It was quickly becoming clear to me that perhaps our personalities weren’t as compatible as I had previously assumed. At least not in the heat of stress that is.
I grip my candy bag and take a couple of steps forward before looking back at my two distressed companions.
“I’m gonna go start getting some candy, you guys can sit here and continue to cry like babies about a stupid shoe and lantern, or you can come with me.” I pronounce softly.
“No, no absolutely not. I’m going to the police station up the road.” Aaron replies, putting his foot down firmly on the pavement.
“So you’re gonna walk another mile just for that?” I implore with rhetorical intentions.
“Listen, that was sketchy stuff back there but dude I don’t feel like walking to the station,” Carter announces with hesitance. Taking a few steps away from Aaron.
“Dude what? Are you kidding? You’re the one that wanted to play detective moron back there! Getting your face all up in that bush so something could bite it off! Oh but now walking to the police station is out of the question for you? Figures. Quit being so lazy all the frickin time.”
I can tell Carter had an answer rising in his throat, but he stops himself. Holding back whatever it was he was originally planning to say in favor of not escalating this any further. I admired him for that, but I could tell it still hadn’t done very much. As his substitute answer was arguably worse.
“Fine. If you want to go to the station that bad then do it, but you’ll be doing it by yourself.”
Aaron’s eyes narrow, and with a long huff, he turns and begins to walk away. Letting us stare right at his back as he doesn’t even turn to see if we were following him.
Luckily the police station was easier to get to from where we were at. So he wouldn’t have to walk back through the path in the woods, just along the road, even though the woods were still on one side of it. The left side, just to be specific.
But you see, as cold as I pretended to be. I couldn’t just let him leave like that, walking by himself in the near pitch blackness of the now early nighttime sky with only streetlamps to light up his path. Not many of the homes down the street to our right had their lights on. Like I said, most of them leave the candy bowls outside and go to bed.
But do you wanna know what made it worse? What truly stopped my blood flow in its tracks?
I caught a glimpse of a bit of bright light in my peripheral vision. It was coming from the dense trees in the forest right to the left of the road. Only around a dozen feet or so from where Aaron was walking. He himself being unaware as he kept his eyes supposedly trained on the path directly in front of him.
I turn my head only slightly, trying to focus in on whatever the light actually was. Coming to find it was a bit more elevated, like the source of it was high up in one of the trees.
Once I begin to further comprehend, I see what was actually two lights, not just one. Both of them in the shape of a lightbulb you’d find in someone’s house. Despite the fact they appeared separate, I could tell were both apart of one thing, one structure… One creature.
Both of those yellow lightbulbs move suddenly and simultaneously, staring down right at Aaron as he walks along and follows him ever so slightly. Whatever this thing was, it was precise and intelligent. That much was clear.
I stand frozen, my instincts refusing to kick in. I don’t see what the rest of this mystery creature looks like, the lack of light doesn’t allow me. But all I know is that it was the furthest thing from both human and animal. All my doubts, all my skepticism, and all my conviction in logic were proven laughably wrong right there in that short little insignificant moment. There I stood like a fool while the universe made me eat my own words.
The two lightbulbs only remain up in that specific tree for a few more seconds before suddenly dashing backward deeper into the woods, bouncing along tree by tree before soon disappearing. Soon leaving my line of sight as I stare dumbfounded, yet terrified.
“Are you good man?” Carter approaches, putting a hand on my shoulder and beginning to shake me.
“You saw it right! Please, please tell me you just saw that!” I exclaim, pointing my right index up at where I had laid eyes on the unsettling sight.
“What are you talking about?” He asks rather confused. An eyebrow on his face rising.
“No, I know you had to have seen that, up in the trees!”
Carter narrows his eyes, making his best attempt to catch a glimpse at whatever it was I had spotted. But unsurprisingly his expression stays static, finding no visual evidence of my claim.
“Alright if you’re trying to be a jerk to get back at me, it’s not funny dude. Maybe we should go catch up with Aaron and convince him to-.” Carter begins before being swiftly cut off by yours truly.
“Why would I do something like that? Did the past ten minutes just not happen to you or something? I know what I saw, it was some sort of animal, an animal that shouldn’t exist!”
“Dude you’re literally the one always saying stuff like that doesn’t exist! Remember? It’s nothing but stories and nonsense? Things that people make up to make sure their kids act right?”
My jaw moves as I prepare to blurt out my response, but instead, I stop. Letting out a slow, controlled exhale. My breath visible in the cool air of the night.
“I know. I know I’m a nonbeliever or whatever you call it. Shouldn’t that show you that I’m serious? I saw something in those trees, it was watching Aaron and who knows if it’s gonna follow him.”
Carter falls silent. Having trouble finding the words to form his response.
At this point, Aaron is out of sight, with the three of us being “too young to have cellphones” as our parents put it. We had no way to reach him other than to go after him physically.
And if that was our only choice, then that was just what we were gonna do.
“Alright enough, let’s go get him.” I proclaim. “But we need to keep an eye on each other’s backs. And once we get him, we’re going home, end of story. You guys can stay at my place for the rest of the night.”
“As much as he gets on my nerves, fine. Let’s go, but I’m just saying that if he gets on my nerves he’s sleeping in the basement. Period.”
When we set off, it had only been a few minutes or so since Aaron had begun his trek. But he had always been a fast walker. That, combined with the poor lighting of the road ahead led me to be unsurprised that I couldn’t see him.
I was still on edge, walking to the right of Carter in order to be further away from the woods, even if the distance was so terribly insignificant. I had gone from being the skeptic to the most paranoid and superstitious one of the group. Not that it was completely unprovoked by any means. Part of me wanted to rationalize it. Maybe someone was just messing with us the whole time, but that part with the lightbulbs would be quite difficult to pull off. Especially with amateur equipment.
Carter and I get to where I had last seen Aaron before he exited the circle of pavement lit up by one of the streetlamps. We both glance around, seeing nothing in our field of view.
The both of us progress further, the street becoming more isolated and empty the more distance we cover. But even in the eerie silence, there was something that still caught my eye.
An open manhole cover right in the middle of the road.
“Carter,” I announce weakly before motioning him over with my hand.
I keep my eyes fixated on it, spotting no sort of safety equipment or sewer workers anywhere nearby. And it didn’t look like it was opened very elegantly either. From what I’ve heard, they aren’t very light.
For one, there were scratches along the actual cover itself, in three parallel but also slightly jagged lines. It was also a few feet away from the edge of the entrance, I looked in the hole. Nothing but the complete darkness of the sewer staring back up at me.
But you see, that in itself didn’t really give us much cause for concern, what did, however. Was a small piece of fabric also hanging from the street and dipping into the black pool of darkness leading to the sewer tunnel below.
It wasn’t any old piece of fabric though, the specific color and patterns on it belong to Aaron’s swamp monster costume. A piece of fabric that looked like it had been forcefully torn right from the rest of his outfit.
Panic set in not too long after. Carter attempted to be rational, playing it off as Aaron trying to get revenge on us. But that just wasn’t the kind of person he was, not in a situation like this. It was honestly even foolish of him to bring it up, considering just how genuinely upset Aaron was only minutes ago.
A sudden flashing of lights bursts into our eyes from further down the road, getting brighter and more potent as they approach closer. I hold my hand up in front of my eyes, the quick and drastic change in light causing me to blink rapidly. But the color scheme of said lights made it quite clear what the cause was.
A police squad car.
The vehicle rolls up next to both Carter and me. Slowing down bit by bit as the front doors are level with the two of us. The passenger window slowly lowering and allowing me to see the officer inside with a look of concern yet caution spread across his face.
But Carter doesn’t even pay the officer much mind, instead continuing to stare at the manhole and fabric, as if he was severely hypnotized.
The officer rolls down his window, leaning towards the passenger side in order to verbally announce his presence.
“Hey boys, I hope you’re out here havin yourselves a good Halloween and whatnot but uh… What are you doin near that manhole? Why is it even open?”
I turn slowly, careful to look the officer in his eyes to convey the intensity of my conviction.
“Our friend, he’s down there. Something took him! You’ve gotta help us, call for backup or something. I know it sounds like BS but there is something dangerous out here and it’s hurting people!”
The officer’s face lights up with what I can only assume was excitement. As if he was a James Bond fanatic who had just been offered some sort of elite espionage job.
“Well, I’ll be damned!” He chuckled before giving me an awkward wink, revealing a small portion of his teeth that were in desperate need of a long visit to the dentist. “Don’t worry I’ll play along, what we huntin? Bigfoot? The creature from the black lagoon? Oh oh, I know. What about uhhh Dracula? Yeah Dracula, that’s a good one.”
“No no, no officer you’re not understanding!” I shout frustratedly. “This isn’t a joke or a game. Our friend is really down there!”
The officer only smirks in response, further provoking my blood to boil inside of me. I can just feel that he in no way believed me or was taking my words seriously.
But regardless, he parked his squad car on the grass and stepped out of the vehicle. Marching over to where we were while shining a blinding flashlight forward.
If he was only gonna sit here and take this as a game, then I figured that him tagging along with us would be better than no help at all. Plus, without his flashlight, there is no way we’d be able to traverse the sewers and find Aaron. Him also having a gun helped, but considering the level of intelligence he had demonstrated thus far, I wasn’t very confident he’d know how to use it any more than either Carter or I would. And that’s really saying something.
The last thing I wanted to do was even think about going down in there, but I couldn’t just leave Aaron behind like that, every second we wasted or spent up here decreased his chances of surviving whatever the hell it was that had taken him. While I held out hope that we’d perhaps be able to find him alive, reality didn’t seem too keen on being kind to people in these kinds of scenarios.
Carter was furious once he snapped out of his trance, prompting the officer to tell him to calm down and that he was playing his role a little too well. Once again, taking our genuine grief and worries as nothing more than what amounted to a joke.
But as I said, we needed him, regardless of his idiocy, he had the resources we did not. And after what I had seen looking down at Aaron from the trees earlier, there was no way I was gonna go down there without a baseball bat or a club or some sort of light source present.
Just to be on the safe side, I tell the officer to I’m gonna reach over and grab a stick on the side of the road. He of course doesn’t seem to care much, going as far as to chuckle and say the sentence.
“Don’t think no twig ever took down Dracula.”
Yeah, this was our help. “What has the world come to in my short thirteen years of existence.” I think to myself.
But I couldn’t abandon Aaron, I couldn’t just leave him behind. Every logical and survival instinct within was telling me this was a terrible idea. And of course, it was, but who doesn’t put themselves in danger when those they care about are in jeopardy?
I haven’t known him long, but time wasn’t the only measure of a bond, not to mention I couldn’t let him leave this earth with our final interactions with each other being unfiltered hostility. I had said earlier that our personalities might not be as compatible as we assumed, but that was no excuse to leave someone to die.
Officer idiot points his flashlight down into the manhole, verbally exaggerating his own personal fear. A fear that was nothing more than an insensitive act.
“Alright, boys, who’s going first?” He smiles oddly politely.
“You!” I yell back immediately. “You seriously want two middle schoolers going down in there before you, an officer of the law?!”
“Okay partner, sheesh, don’t have too much fun.” He quips.
I look around in desperation, searching for any passing trick or treaters, parents, or any source of help besides this numbskull. But the universe didn’t seem to be feeling generous in that regard. All in all, I know what I should’ve done, I know that I should’ve tried much harder to find someone else and to get the hell out of there. Knock on doors, ask to use a phone. Something.
Officer idiot keeps a close eye on us while beginning to climb down the ladder, making me question his stance on how much of a joke he truly thought this was. Despite his outside appearance of acting like a complete clown, there was a part of me that felt unnerved by his stare, like he was making sure we didn’t try to run or get away in any capacity.
There’s an uncomfortable silence as he descends, Carter and I lean down over the hole to watch in an eerie awe. The darkness almost seems to swallow him up, the only thing stopping it being his flashlight which he finally turned on once reaching the bottom of the ladder.
This tunnel appeared quite large by sewer tunnel standards. From above I wasn’t able to get the full picture or grasp on its true size. But from what I could tell the officer had at least seven feet of space on either side of himself.
I was well aware of police having some powerful flashlights, but this thing only barely put a dent in the black void that was the sewer tunnel. I can’t help but hold my breath while Carter does the opposite, I was still willing to go down there for the sake of Aaron, and even though I was just a dumb middle schooler, I was still in tune with my survival instincts.
If anything happened to the officer, if I heard so much as a yelp or whimper, a gasp, or see his eyes widen in terror, then all bets were off. But no, he seemed calm and collected. Using his flashlight to scan both in front and behind him.
“Oh yeah.” He snickered. “This is definitely a monster hideout if I’ve ever seen one.”
“Wait you’re a policeman and you’ve never been in a sewer before?” Questions Carter.
“I ain’t no dang sanitation worker.” Officer idiot snaps back.
He looks up at us from below, flashing Carter and I an awkward wink in an attempt to maintain his so-called character.
“Would you just hurry up!” I demand, my anger seething as I watch this buffoon continuously look around like a lost child in a store.
Carter goes for the ladder to start climbing, but I slightly push him out of the way, insisting that I go first. Seen as I felt responsible for this all coming to pass in the first place. I drop my empty candy bag to the side before beginning to descend.
I climb down, Officer idiot at least doing me the favor of shining the flashlight so I can see what I’m doing as I descend.
“Alright, Carter come on,” I say with a rushed tone. Motioning for him to follow.
But I don’t have to tell him twice, he begins. Climbing down the ladder with great haste and nearly slipping on the last couple steps.
I turn to look down the tunnel to our left, and along the walkway of concrete next to the stream of filthy sewage water sits yet another piece of Aaron’s swamp monster costume. A torn strip of it several inches long and a couple of inches wide.
The only difference from the last piece? Well, this time it had a coating of fresh blood on it.
And just as I’m about to scream, to project my shock and existential terror. I feel something suddenly press itself against the back of my head. Something hard and metallic.
And then… A click.
“The two of you won’t say another word. If you scream? Well then you can forget about even getting to live as long as originally planned. Live bait is always more effective.”
I stand as still as stone, slowly raising my hands into the air as I spot Carter doing the same in my peripheral vision. The both of us as silent as can be. His voice wasn’t much different, but he quickly dropped the whole intellectually inept act. Opting for a more severe and threatening tone.
I hear the officer… If you could still call him that. Activate his walkie-talkie disguised as a typical police radio for the first time. He holds it in one hand, keeping his pistol trained on me with the other.
“This is Agent Owen, I’ve secured the bait package, Subject 16A is out currently tracking the main target. Said he’s having trouble picking up a scent. Need a status report on the rest of Team X-Zero’s location.”
There’s no response at first, so the officer tries again. Beginning to repeat his previous few sentences before being interrupted by another male voice on the other end. One that sounded quite annoyed.
“Yes, I heard you. Just give me a second. Jesus.”
“My apologies Director.” He replies with a much weaker tone than before. But if only he knew that he would soon be given something to be much more sorry for.
Because less than a hundred feet down the tunnel, I spot a pair of glowing dots that suddenly pierce through the darkness. But not like the light bulb-shaped ones from earlier, no. These were different, other than obvious cosmetic contrast, they felt just as sinister. Just as evil. I had no doubt in my mind that they were focused on us. Staring us down like we were prey.
They were a bright, lime green. Circular in their shape and held steady.
“Is- is that…” I begin, only being cut off by my quickly rising fear levels. Every bone in my body feeling like it had turned into mush. My stomach churned, I felt just like a rabbit in the eyes of a fox.
A powerful and low growl erupts from just below the dots, which themselves were placed just over eight feet high. Establishing the freakish size and scale of this mostly concealed and unseen entity.
The officer, agent, mercenary. Whatever he was, takes his pistol off of the back of my head. His hands shaking as he points it into the occupied darkness. His breathing increases as his terror jumps to being on par with Carter and I’s.
Whatever training and conditioning he possessed all went out the window in that moment. Displaying that he was just as scared, and just as human as everyone else. Revealing the true nature that he was a coward.
Another growl emerges from the mysterious beast, but this one is far more unsettling than the first. It’s acknowledgment, acknowledgment of the fact that we were there. We were its goal and it had us just where it wanted us.
“How could it… How could it know? It wasn’t supposed to be here, not yet.” Agent Owen whispers under his breath. His bottom lip quivering as he does so.
I pleaded with my brain to allow me to yell or scream. I don’t know what this guy was talking about. Were him and his… Buddies, hunting this thing? Why? For what purpose? What was all really going on here?
Owen steps forward, his hand still shaking and the gun with it, but only for mere seconds. Because he suddenly stops. Dropping to his knees and strangely staring ahead, as if he were hypnotized. A deer in headlights as they say.
His grip loosens on the weapon, it dropping onto the walkaway and nearly falling into the flowing and putrid-smelling liquid sewage. But I don’t hesitate to take advantage of the situation, I quickly lunge over and grab the gun without a second thought. Surprisingly enough this doesn’t seem to bother the agent, he appeared to not care even one bit.
The hulking creature down the tunnel then lets out another earth-shaking exhale, its bass lower than the roar of an angry grizzly. It knew that it was in control, that it was the dominant one here and there was next to nothing we could do about it.
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2021.10.25 04:44 jomit1 Just fought the biggest war of my campaign so far, is this personal union worth fighting the coalition for?

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