Chapter 6.1 – Crazy

Doc wipes grime and sweat away from his exhausted eyes and fights off the need to sleep.
He has spent the last few days frantically racking his brains to find a way to make sense of what has happened. Is this what they call crazy? Was his life with Hope merely a delusional fantasy? Was it just a symptom of some kind of mental break? It was so vivid, so real. He held his children, he can remember every detail, even the unmistakable scent that accompanies new babies in the house. His hands shake from the combination of anxiety and fatigue as he continues to assemble the gadget.
There is one thing he knows for certain; he was married to Hope Barimen, and he had fathered twin boys with her. He fights to keep that knowledge from fading away like a forgotten dream. He had already found himself wondering why he was wearing a wedding ring. Ironically It is the ring itself that has kept him from forgetting completely. Doc knows he must do something put things back the way they are supposed to be. Why else would the ring still be on his hand? It is a physical manifestation of his responsibility to correct the universe. He laughs out loud at the thought of it …no pressure there, Doc.
Nothing is going to happen here in this slum. He needs to find means to return to Sunset Valley. That is where the temporal loop is centered. But for some reason, he cannot remember the details surrounding what he learned before everything went all wonky. But he has to know whether he is crazy or not before taking off on some fool’s journey. He had made a similar device before, in that other place; to measure some kind of anomaly. It lead him to Sunset Valley, and ultimately to Hope Barimen. But there was something, or someone else …something he cannot remember.
He has kept a furious pace out of fear that important memories will also slip away like many of the other ones have. He has written the details he can remember onto various scraps of dirty paper he keeps folded up in his pocket. His wedding ring is the one link to the dream that keeps him from abandoning the effort. As long as it is on his hand, he knows Hope and his children are real.
But first things first.
Lack of resources hinders his progress as he is forced to construct trivial items and consign them for small profit. Trips to the scrapyard for salvage, and the local grocery for food are the only times his mind is not focused on saving his family. It is during these times that Doc reflects on the events that find him living on the street. He had spent his childhood without a home, moving from shelter to shelter with his mother. After she died, he just continued doing what he knew how to do. He wonders why he didn’t just pull himself out of it.
He is thinking about this one night while returning to his workshop in the slum, when he discovers that his mind isn’t the only thing that has wandered too far. The sound distant gunshots snaps him out of the walking sleep he had succumbed to. He is on the far side of town, near the blighted industrial sprawl outside Paris. This is where he was born; where his mother died. It is too late for him to turn and try to walk back. Perhaps this is his body’s way of telling him to get away from the workshop and get some sleep.
The backlit stained glass windows from a small church nearby catches his eye. He will not be safe sleeping out in the open in this part of town. Perhaps the pastor will be feeling generous tonight and allow him to stay the night. Doc quickens his pace as the sound of sporadic gunfire has drawn much closer. He quickly enters the church narthex just as the rolling battle seems to have arrived only a block or two away.
Doc stops in his tracks when the pastor stands up from attending to another sim sleeping on a pew. His young face is drawn with worry and stress, and he states gently but firmly to Doc that no weapons are permitted in the church. He knows this sim. He is the pastor that married Faith and Jimmy at the church in Sunset Valley.
It strikes him, suddenly, that he may not need his machine to prove he is sane, after all.
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3 thoughts on “Chapter 6.1 – Crazy

  1. I just caught up on the whole story!! It took all day but i really enjoyed it! its so different from other legacies that i have read! Cant wait to find out what happens next. And i think it has inspired me to try my hand at story telling. If i can produce something half as good as yours i think ill be on the right track!

    Like

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