Tamto

Workbench of staff member Avelon21. Do not touch.

rating: +4+x

Dear, dear Karl,

I will work on the assumption that you had no idea of yesterday's horrible, monstrous effects on the city of New Houston. If this proves to be untrue, and I find out that you really did mean to cause that messy… meltdown, I will find you and make sure that you do not forget the faces of the men, women, and children that you so "unwittingly" murdered.

I find it absolutely terrible that someone with your caliber of strength would even imagine to do something so horrid, that even us quaint thieves, bandits, and ne'er-do-wells on the roads of the Del Rio-Canadian Highway have heard rumors—rumors that include words which are most definitely not synonymous with "good", "pleasant", or "deserving of life". This truly shocks me, mainly because I was of the opinion that in a world where even the old man might be able to stab your mind with his eyesight, large-scale evil would disappear. I mean, of course the small stuff would always be around—no police, no worries, as you know—but lines of betrayal and revenge are absolutely revitalized in this time of disorder, so I hope your family and friends know of your stupidity. Stupidity in even being associated with such a tragedy, if you really claim innocence.

However, for the sake of my letter to you today, I will assume you've committed the crime, but didn't mean to lash out in such a terrible manner. As you probably know, this is a judgement made by my own attitudes towards the natural goodwill of humans in this day and age, and not the result of an analysis by a post-apocalyptic news station. Even though, ironically, this would be the best time for 24-hour news in a world where you're not even sure if the Earth still spins at the same rate. Those strange, walking, wire-like, artificially intelligent monstrosities known as the Journalism Robots, or the Jo-bots, if you will, have been spitting serious misinformation and bias since their conception, but there's not really much else to get info from. I'd stay away from large settlements if I were you.

Of course, surely you also realize that just because the world is half-empty because of some disaster from space doesn't mean you get to act as if the world is completely empty. Remember that the things you do have consequences, Karl. Know that anyone you come across could potentially have the key to defeating you.

You know, all of this reminds me of when I was still finding my way around the beautiful business of dangerous living, back when I had decided to settle on kidnapping (something that hadn't worked out and caused me to change course, after a certain gaseous gal escaped too easily and almost killed me). We met at what was left of a bar, remember? The piano was playing and the rain outside was comforting, if a little wet. The wood walls were dim in the lighting, and blended the sounds of rain, song, and chatter into a calm scatter. You were so young and powerful in that time, powerful because of your acclaimed drive to do more. You wanted to see past the strange skylines of living buildings, past cyber-trees, past lands burned by radiation and haunted by those with unfathomable powers…It seems you've failed slightly, hm? Causing a catastrophe like the rest. I mean, I'm sure there's still time to get back on our original plan of action…Of course, that was quite some time ago…

Why am I even writing to you, you may still ask? Well, if you haven't figured it out, it's finally happened, after crossing paths with you several times to the point where I wonder why we aren't quite enemies or quite friends yet:

I've been contracted to kill you. And I'm giving you ten days before I start trying to track you down. As I write this from a low-lying apartment room, I can already feel the sun shining on my blades as my blood pumps, my heart fueled by the thought of another job done. For now though, it's dark out tonight, really dark, frankly, and a little chilly. I'm not well-bundled in layers, but perhaps I'll be able to afford to buy some from the market after I'm through with you.

I think you already know I have a talent for sniffing out blood with my blades, a talent which made me so fit for tracking and hunting ventures; and if you're wondering where I got a sample of your life juice, look no further than those who also wish you dead. Again, I'm giving you time to either end yourself or expose yourself. The end result will be the same, but I'm "cutting you some slack" because I think you weren't that ill-meaning.

Your pal,

Lekter, Primary Hitman from Roth Incorporated.

P.S: If you were wondering how this letter got to you, don't. I will admit though that the new carrier birds are a wonder—And don't worry about me putting a tracker on the bird, because 1) I wasn't able to find a suitable tracker in time and 2) I do like a challenge =D


You step into Atrium 21. The atrium is a dark, circular chamber, with rows and aisles all pointed with anticipation towards a performance "coming soon". There is a large wooden stage at the end of the seats' gaze, coated with years of paint, dust, and sadness. Some lights are strung along it, in random places; they provide sharp lighting for a limited area. You read the plaque next to the door you just entered:

WELCOME TO ATRIUM 21, HOME TO THE WANDERERS' PIANO HALL.

Looking back at the stage, you now notice a piano and a…Tin man onstage. You go over to say hi.

Upon closer inspection, you see that the tin man has his right hand outstretched. There is a small circle outlined on his palm, expecting a coin.



Tamto was always silent. Except when approached.

On one such day, two young students of the Studies of the Oracle stepped cautiously to shelf 8C, where the blood-orange glass statue of Tamto the Visionary rested in an alcove carved of cedar wood. The local weather was dark and cloudy, although the North C section of the shelves had purple torches hanging from the ends of the bookcases, illuminating the aisles for all who passed.

Jessica, the caring apprentice in the dark-blue robes held out her hand to the statue. She held a cup of fish oil and poured it all into a depression at the base of the statue. Atticus, who was wearing similar clothing, continued the ritual with a chant. "The future is the path that we forge with the present. The future is the path that we forge with the present." He spiraled into a deep trance, keeping a steady beat to preserve the integrity of the spell.

A creaking shudder jumped into the glass figure: it had awoken. Tamto the Wise spoke, with the voice of a million willows in the breeze. "What say the both of you, to the seer that you stand in front of?"

The students replied, "To see and learn and write the paths soon to become." A clunky response at best, thought Tamto, but it would serve.

"Then sit and listen here, seated as students young."


Tamto the Excellent is renowned across all 18 atriums in the Library for his accuracy and proficiency in delivering the future in conveniently sized chunks of prophecy. Scholars around the universe speak of and transcribe his knowledgeable words for the days to come, when such vision is needed.



Mel, don't forget to say this to the audience when you're introducing the play: …The play takes place in an unknown future, haunted by a disaster that killed millions all over the world. The survivors were left with supernatural abilities, although they aren't always like the superpowers that you might be familiar with. In the following skit, join us as we see how the spirit of adventure doesn't die, even when half of the world does.

AL, that last line is so stupid.

MEL: You can change it if you want.

Can you two hurry up and join the others? We're taking a pre-show photo.

Foreword

A JAR is seen onstage. It should be the main focus, although other ambiance effects and objects may be present. Light and sound should be minimal. The mood is suspense. Within the JAR is…Unable to be seen because of poor enough visibility. The contour of an…Organ system can be seen. An embodied voice begins to emanate from the JAR.

JAR: You may think I'm crazy, but what I saw was true. If you desire to learn about the Underwater City, I will be happy to impart my knowledge to you. First, however, we must take a visit to a world of chaos and destruction, of Survivors and Compensations. It is the world I live in, but perhaps not the one you do. The Ways of the world work differently in some places…But that is a story of a different brew.

MATTHEW and SOLÈNE enter. The lights focus on them rather than the jar. MATTHEW is visibly distressed. They are not carrying anything with them and are arguing with their words, not with knives. They are wearing what can be best described as "dystopian dressing".

MATTHEW: Leave me alone, Sol. I'm not going with you. Go back to dinner and eat your stew.

SOLÈNE: Stop. No one in their right mind would want to eat Miss Melany's chicken stew at eight in the evening. Look at me. Why not? What's the point of your gift if—

MATTHEW: What I have is not a gift. It's not even enough Compensation for this world! Buildings are alive! The seasons are always wack! Half of the human race died when the Singularity struck, and more are dying—

SOLÈNE: You think I never heard, saw, lived the same things? Stop crying about your dad dying, my dad was a total asshole before anyone even got turned into a butterfly.

MATTHEW: (Perceptive) Your dad got turned into a butterfly? I guess that's why you don't like flowers…

Beat.

MATTHEW: I don't understand why you feel so strongly about this…(Rushed) Can you run your "plan" by me one more time?

SOLÈNE: Fine. It's simple. We go to the beach. You use your power to find the algae, and I use mine to get it without triggering any of the…creatures nearby. It won't even take that long if we do it right.

JAR: Algae. So quaint, yet so crucial to our story.

MATTHEW: And what do we do with this…algae…?

SOLÈNE: We eat it. And we see what happens. And maybe, if the books aren't stupid and the phones aren't lying, we might be able to make life better for everyone.


The Forgotten World—Scene 1

A background screen for the stage is recommended; if used, it would project images and clips to portray the events described. There is no strict requirement, and it is whatever the director sees fit. The scene first starts off at a beach at evening.

JAR: The story I shall tell you happened when I was travelling through the third largest settlement of what was left of my country. I was looking for a rare, valuable plant that would help me make… I don't remember what anymore, not after what happened.

A bloom of mysterious lime-and-red algae should be shown on the back-screen. It twitches and floats, as if in a petri dish.

Many folks rambled about a sea…plant…? known as "Alga Irae." It would've given me the right strength…to do…whatever I wanted to do…At least, that's what the books always mentioned. Wistful mentions of health…

ERAL, who has the same voice as the JAR, walks onstage. He is covered in a trench coat. The focus is now on ERAL as the speaker, and the JAR should be obscured as to prevent confusion.

Before, before this, before anything happened, before some weird thing from space struck Earth a few years ago and made everything crazy, I had—have still, hopefully—a mother.

MOTHER enters. She is sick and is rolled in on a bed. A DOCTOR accompanies her.

MOTHER: Huh. What's going on?

DOCTOR: Nothing, Ms. Caldderhide. (To ERAL) Your mom is in a terribly poor condition, because of her body's tendency to…

ERAL: My mother had a curse to die from the strange scientific ability given to her, and it is my duty to save her before it's too late…

The scene fades back to the dim beach.

ERAL: I reached my destination without much difficulty. This seems obvious, considering that no one had been there for such a long time. The real threat is from what lurks within the beach of Tamtane, not what obstructs entry to it.

The remainder of this scene takes place in the ruins of an underwater city, washed over by rising sea levels. It is recommended that a spotlight shines on ERAL for the purposes of the next devices.

ERAL: The water further off the coast, farther from the shore of the beach, turned out to house the ruins of an ancient city. The stone buildings bore frightening shapes, the sun unable to pierce to such a great depth and bring its light within. I had a feeling that I had seen all this before, yet I couldn't be sure, for my new eyes enabling me to stay underwater distorted everything I saw.

ERAL: However, what could I do! I needed this plant so much that I had to continue searching. I felt my bones compact ever-so-slowly, but I kept walking, as I new that at this point, nothing could stop me; I marched as fast as I could into the ruins, which matched the rumors of the broken buildings I had heard of. I regretted that very quickly. Already after crossing the gate leading to the city, I noticed…

ERAL:…Dead bodies.

ERAL: They were everywhere in the aquatic depths. Their faces, their bodies… they did not decay at all, remaining in the moment of their deaths, as if no law of nature could reach them down here. It was as if, despite their death, they were in a kind of half-life, damned to suffer constantly, unable join the dead yet forbidden to remain with the living.

ERAL: Even with all of my power and knowledge, I could not help them, not even ease their pain a little. I had to go back, without the algae nor any hope for those people.


The Forgotten World—Scene 2


The Forgotten World—Scene 3


Afterword

JAR: What do I have to show for this adventure? Just this diary, or a notebook, or whatever you wish to call it. Although the Library could gain a valuable article, no one took me seriously. What am I supposed to do now? I will try to find a way to help them, those poor people beneath the sea. Will I discover a method, a cure to their half-life? I cannot say; I hope I will.

I was lucky to find a few people who believed me. It is only thanks to them that you had the opportunity to read the work of the Nameless Traveler, discoverer of the lost Underwater City.

Maybe we will meet someday.

Maybe…


Historical Letter, Sci-Fi twist, Café-verse. Don't disappoint !!!
Workbench of staff member Avelon21. Do not touch.

11 entries on site by Avelon21.

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