Chapter 1: Warning!

Do not turn the page. Do not read this book. Warning! This book contains exogenic memes known to be received uncritically as idée fixe and transmitted to anyone else within communication range with prejudicial affinity. Warning! This book contains a viral message whose semantic payload, if absorbed, will cause obsessive-compulsive behavior … Let it go, the man said. Nobody will take our warning seriously. They will turn the page and continue reading or, even worse … they won’t bother to read the book at all.

Chapter 2: Thot

The Thot was hidden in a meme ensconced in a word which was encoded in an electromagnetic wave propagated back from the gnab gib at a speed that had no meaning in the physical universe. Why couldn’t the Thot have a name? Even ghosts had names. Even time could have a name. Especially time. So why not a Thot? What would he call himself? What did it matter what he would call himself? Who would call him by that name? The name he so wanted to be called by. He decided to call himself Ekim, Ekim the Thot. It had a kind of tintinabulous ring to it.

Chapter 3: The Long White Hallway

The old man shuffled down the long white hallway in his pale blue paper slippers. Underneath his thin cloth institutional bathrobe he wore the brown striped pajamas that were his hospital uniform. If he were to try to escape by shuffling out of the hospital, they would certainly catch him because they moved so quickly and he shuffled so slowly. He reached the door of his room and fumbled with the knob. The door seemed to open by itself. By accident. He shuffled over to his bed and sat down. He leaned forward reaching for his notebook and pencil. He opened the notebook to a blank page and started to write. It was like one of those sketches of a hand making a sketch of itself.

Chapter 4: Session

Do you know who you are? Yes. Do you know where you are? Yes, in a hospital … in a mental … in a ward for the in- … ins- … insa-a-a-a … Insane? Were you trying to say insane? No, I was trying to go insane. I meant to say insidious. Very clever of you, ha ha! Do you know why you are here? I suppose it is because I keep attempting to kill myself. Very perceptive. Why do you suppose you keep attempting to kill yourself? First, my wife. Your wife? My wife … she left me. Our records show that you never married. Your records are mistaken. Our records are mistaken? Your records are mistaken. We’ve been through this before. Have we? Yes, we have. I don’t know what is worse, for my wife to have left me or for her to have never been. You always say that. So why do you keep asking me the same questions over and over and over … Please stop repeating. I don’t think I can … Please stop. Ok. Then, my dog. I couldn’t bear the tremendous weight of my continued existence after that. And then … Yes? And then … Yes? And then …


Mike Stone

Raanana Israel


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Filed under Prose, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Stories and Novels

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