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Old 04-18-2008, 10:01 AM   #1
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Earth, Sky, Fire and Rain - Chapter 28 (19/4/08)

Wooooo, another chapter from Beyond the International Date Line... It's Futuretastic!

As they say, the plot thickens....

Disclaimer: All a load of rot. Don't know the band or anything... For entertainment purposes only. If symptoms persist, please see your doctor....

end of chapter 27:

"I know. You're right, I never considered it. And that is frightening."

"It's probably nothing... maybe you just need to talk to someone, and figure out where those dreams are really coming from."

"Maybe." I fought back tears. Would this never end? As soon as I thought I'd found some sort of solid ground, it would turn to quicksand under my feet. "I'm sick of it, Glen. I just want it to stop, I want things how they were before."

"I know, love. So do I."

He held me until I finally went back to sleep, a long time later.

Chapter 28:

There is no fiction that will truly fit this situation
I'm documenting every detail, every conversation

"Could you join us in here, please? We need to have a talk."

"Can it wait? I'm just in the middle of something..."

"No, it can't. And we know you're not writin' songs, so you can stop typing for ten minutes."

"Fine. ... Okay, what's it about this time?"

"We've spoken before about this. We need you focussed, because this whole thing is in danger of being de-railed. We're at a point where we should be able to start wrapping things up, but you keep disappearing, mentally and physically, and now you've started coming up with stuff that has nothing at all to do with what we've got so far."

"We don't mind musical tangents, we all do that, that's what keeps things interesting. But now is not a good time."

"Let's finish this one before we start the next, that's all."

"Right. Is that actually all?"

"We wanna know what the hell is goin' on with you, that's what."

"I seem to recall we had a rather long conversation about that after I got back the last time. You don't have to tell me again that I shouldn't have left quite so abruptly. And I told you about the dreams, and what I think is going on with them and Lisa and Mag and Ewain and I. You didn't believe me, but I told you. I do hope I managed to convince you there's nothing of a personal nature going on between Lisa and I, at least."

"About that. I thought we agreed you wouldn't call her again."

"There were... exceptional circumstances..."

"Things are not right like this. There's something wrong when your wife calls mine and tells her that you're still dreaming about this other woman, and then you go and CALL HER in the middle of the night?"

"Now, that's not really the issue at hand..."

"This whole thing is affecting everything. I think we're justified in addressing it now..."

"You want to know what's going on? Ewain was out of his skull. He wanted blood to go into that circle, for the power it would give the spirits. Not even the Earth spirits that were originally there. He had an ulterior motive. It would be easier if I could remember all his memories without having to wait for these dreams, but there it is. But what I dreamed that night – and I'm sure Lisa did too – that had consequences. Every death there had long-reaching consequences, and I think the effects are still being felt. I think this won't be over until something is done."


"God, you're actually serious!"

"Do you know how this sounds?"

"Look, if you're havin' a crisis of faith, there's no need to resort to this hippie druid stuff..."

"They weren't druids! And this has nothing to do with my faith."

"It also has nothing to do with finishing the album. Anyway, we're still worried about you."

"If there's some reason why you don't want to continue, or if you're not happy with what we've got, you need to tell us. You've never been shy about that before."

"No, no, it's not that at all. I'm not about to quit the band. Look, I've told you what's 'going on' with me. Whether you believe it or not is up to you. I'll try to make more of an effort here, all right? I know the album is important. But I'm not going to be much good to you if I can't get this stuff out of my head. It's got its own momentum..."

"That's exactly what we're worried about."


Ed had emailed me, of course, after Glen had intercepted that phone call. Ed didn't mention having called – perhaps he'd believed Glen when he'd said I wasn't there at the time. Ed's dream had been the same, of course, although he said that Ewain's reaction to Raele's death had been "chilling", without elaborating on what that meant. And he asked me, in the email, what Mag had felt when she'd put her hand to the ground.

I didn't reply. If it was all a delusion, there was nothing to be gained by perpetuating it, as Glen had put it.

This whole mess did not help matters at work. If I wasn't distracted by these bloody dreams, and the images and thoughts they left in my head, then I was trapped in the cycle of questioning my own sanity. It didn't help to try to figure out exactly what words like 'sane' and 'normal' meant, either.

At the end of January, I got called into the supervisor's office. That cold, dense feeling of dread settled in my stomach. The supervisor, Becky, asked me to take a seat, before sitting down herself.

"Dr. Erikson... Lisa, there's no easy way to say this. We've talked about this before – you probably know what I'm going to say. I'm sorry, but I'm afraid we're going to have to let you go."

I can't say I was stunned. But I'd never been sacked before. It was an entirely new, and very unpleasant experience. I wavered for a moment, before deciding I couldn't let this happen without at least some token resistance.

"Look, I know I've been distracted. I'm trying to keep my mind on the job, and I haven't made any more mistakes... have I?"

Becky shook her head, but I kept talking before she could say anything.

"I'm doing the work. I'll make an effort, I'll get back on schedule. I can leave the distractions at the door. I know they shouldn't have affected my work at all, but..." I wasn't about to elaborate on exactly what was distracting me. "I've not been sleeping well. Maybe I should see a doctor, get some sleeping pills..."

"I'm sorry, but you know the company is on a strict time frame. And I'm sorry this has to happen when you have... problems at home, but the managers need someone who can work faster." I saw her stop herself from saying 'sorry' again.

Sorry but, sorry but. I'd kick her sorry butt... it wasn't her fault though. She was right, the work had to be done on time, or the company would lose a lot of money. And it was clear that I was not capable of finishing on time, not in my current state.

I sighed, yielding to the inevitable. "I understand; speed over accuracy. How long have I got?"

Becky looked uncomfortable. "The end of the day. There's someone else coming in tomorrow."

"Just as well I don't have much stuff to clear out," I said. Just another tap after the blow of losing my job. I considered asking who was replacing me, then thought better of it.

"Thank you for the work you've done," she said, probably trying to make herself feel better.

"And thank you for hiring me in the first place. I'm sorry it didn't work out." Hollow words, empty politeness. We stood, and shook hands.

At the end of the day, I walked out of there with my few belongings I'd kept there in my bag, leaving nothing behind.

Unemployed. Hell. The money for the last fortnight's work would appear in my account at the end of that week, and then I would have to start thinking about another job. For once in my life, the prospect held absolutely no appeal whatsoever. I didn't want to work, I didn't want to look at another rock. I didn't want to do anything.

Glen took the news as he tended to, with a thoughtful silence after the noises of commiseration. That concerned look was back on his face. I was slumped in an armchair, a beer in one hand, staring at the muted television. A group of doctors seemed to be having a heated discussion over the head of their hapless patient. I felt sorry for the patient, laying there with some disease while his fate was being discussed and decided by higher powers. At least most of us didn't have to listen to the decision-making process, I mused. All we knew was that shit just happened.

"Shit happens," I said aloud, raising my beer.

"Indeed, it does," Glen agreed, lifting his own in acknowledgement. "What now?"

"I go job-hunting again, I suppose," I sighed. "A couple of months ahead of schedule, but there's not much to be done about that. Something will be out there."

"You needn't dive straight back into the job market," Glen said slowly. "We're doing all right at the moment. If you wanted to take a break, sort things out..."

I turned my bleary gaze on him. "Right now, I'd be deliriously happy if you told me I never had to work again."

"We're not doing THAT well," Glen said, with a ghost of a smile. "And I hope that you haven't lost all the joy you used to get out of your work. Granted, core logging is boring, but I know you love fieldwork."

"Yeah, I know. Right now I never want to see a rock again."

Glen took a breath. "Have you thought about seeing someone?"

I debated with myself about making a joke about 'seeing other people', but sluggishly decided it wasn't a good idea. "Not really."

"Maybe you should. I wish I could help you, but I don't know how. These people know what they're doing..."

"Have you ever seen a shrink? And maybe you can help me. I dunno." I didn't want to admit that I might need professional help. What good could talking to a stranger do, anyway?

On the other hand, it probably wouldn't hurt, except financially. And Glen seemed to be telling me that we could handle it, for the moment at least.

"Do you want to talk to me about it? I mean, more? If you think it will help you, I don't mind."

I thought about that. I knew Glen loved to get to the bottom of things, find out why things happened. In an alternative universe, he might have made a decent counsellor... but I had to admit, I wouldn't feel comfortable telling him the sort of details that I imagined a counsellor would want to hear. Also, he didn't have that outsider perspective (nor any sort of qualification in the humanities). He was too close.

"I dunno," I said again, evading the issue. "Where do you look for psychologists? The yellow pages? Shrinks 'R' Us?"

"I guess the phone book is a start. Or there are probably websites and things."

I toyed with the idea of asking people I knew if they knew of anyone, but as much as I would have been more comfortable with a recommendation from a friend, I didn't want anyone to know I was even thinking about doing this. I would figure something out, I told myself, and drained the bottle.


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Old 04-18-2008, 10:09 AM   #2
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I do love a good intrigue! When do we get the next bit?

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Old 04-18-2008, 11:11 AM   #3
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*phew* all caught up.

More plz!
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Old 04-18-2008, 11:40 AM   #4
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mmm chapterz from the fuutuuuuuuuure!
Originally Posted by GraceRyan View Post
And if U2 EVER did Hawkmoon live....and the version from the Lovetown Tour, my uterus would leave my body and fling itself at Bono - for realz.
Don't worry baby, it's gonna be all right. Uncertainty can be a guiding light...
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Old 04-18-2008, 11:45 AM   #5
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Shrinks R Us... love it!
Originally Posted by GraceRyan View Post
And if U2 EVER did Hawkmoon live....and the version from the Lovetown Tour, my uterus would leave my body and fling itself at Bono - for realz.
Don't worry baby, it's gonna be all right. Uncertainty can be a guiding light...
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Old 04-20-2008, 06:59 AM   #6
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Next bit tonight or tomorrow, depending on Stuff...

You're never too late for free steak knives, Z
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Old 04-20-2008, 07:32 AM   #7
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No job = free time.
Free time = go find Edge.
Go find Edge =
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Old 04-20-2008, 01:46 PM   #8
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i likeit.

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