I’ve side slipped.
Not deliberatly though, which is more worrying. I have been called here somehow.
looking around the world looks like the one I have just left. The same colours and smells but as if they have been passed through a filter. A ten foot sign above Union Street displays a happy looking family, two adults and a two kids on a day out somewhere I have never heard of. However I can see behind the glamour and the wording is very straightforward.
Something is very wrong here. I must find out why I have been dragged to this world. There is a beat that is forming directions anda map in my subconscious. There is an agent at work, or someone from their side messing with reality. Setting off towards the source, I notice a newstand beside the Union terrace bridge. Rows and rows of magazines with happy sounding names but depressing headlines. A solitary newspaper sits near the bottom and I can see that the Big G have admitted that the food is poisened but that Juluy from dancybeatband is not concerned. This piques my curiousity and I stop to read before the vendor chases me away.
“I’m not worried because the Big G know what is going on and they have not stopped eating.”
Thats the extent of the article. I place the paper back on the rack and move off. The vendor nods to me as I pass and mumbles something that sounds like he has misfitting teeth. I smile and continue on.
When I reach the source of the beat, I have passed multiple advertising hoardings all proclaiming happy sights yet just behind the public view, the words of control are bold and clear. Subconscious manipulation. I suddenly feel like I am in an eighties movie and someone has handed me sunglasses.
The source is a building sat in the middle of a tenement row. Money has been spent on the superficial look of it all but the cracks are still visible if you know where to look. Knocking on the door, I wait as the beat changes to a less thumping one. the shapes that the sounds make are warmer now, welcoming. The door is thrown open and I see the agent. One of ours by the looks of her. I smile, raise my top hat with my silver topped cane and dont even wait for an invitation inside. She smiles and closes the door behind me.
“Thank buffy they finally sent someone. I was beginning to think I had been abandoned here.” She then moves to the kitchenette near the back of the property and puts the kettle on. It is adorned with happy quotes and pictures of celebrities I almost recognise but not quite. I indicate I would like a cup of tea in a china cup and the look of dissapointment on my face when she uses a slightly smaller mug than hers, well lets just say that I almost left there and then.
“Tell me whats happened here?” I say, declining the offer of biscuits that at one angle look fantastically delicious but at another angle, look dry and full of additives.
“I was sent here to combat the enemy, I cannot remember exactly how long ago. But I failed.” Her eyes darken as she recalls the events. “before I realised, they had won. The world woke up to this,” her right hand gestures all around her, “And no-one seemed to notice. I speak to people and they tell me that it has always been like this. The Big G have always been in charge and they know what is best for us. Eventually I had to stop talking about the change as I was attracting too much attention.”
Nodding I sip the acrid tasting tea. The water is not at peace. A small incantation and the taste improves almost a hundredfold.
“So I waited to be recalled by the agency. I had failed and expected to be chastised. What I did not expect was being left here. I cant take it anymore. Everywhere I go, the people dont want to know what is going on. they accept what the celebrities tell them. The other week, the magazines started calling them tees because celebrities was too long a word. You would think that was the best idea in the world the way that the public reacted. Words keep being shortened, vowels dropped, slang taking over. It’s like they are destroying language to stop it being used to inform.”
The silence lasted a good few minutes as I digested the situation. She looked exhausted and the beat was no longer part of the atmosphere.
“Well young lady, ” I said this as a matter of courtesy, she was at least as old as me, if not older. “We must put a stop to this.”
She looked stunned.
“I thought you were here to take me home?”
Shaking my head caused her to look sad again.
“No my dear. I was side slipped here by something you did. The beat led me here for a reason. I intend to help you put this world back on track again. However I think you are wrong about the enemy being behind this. They would just have removed this world from the reality matrix. Yet this world still exists. There is someone else behind all of this.”
How little I knew what truth awaited me.