Author Archive

My beautiful panorama

Sunday, October 3rd, 2010

In case you’re wondering, the beautiful mountain panorama at the top of each page of The Scientist comes from photos I took back in the day, when we were chasing “Speed Demon.” That’s the Grand Tetons you’re looking at. (Here’s a link to a full sized version.)

I miss going out in the field doing things like that. Now, all I do is make comments on narratives, and find appropriate photos to decorate my posts.

But I’m too chicken to take Soraya up on her offer to visit the underground world. Janice is a braver girl than me!

Guess I’ll just keep reading. — Flyss

Not much protection!

Saturday, October 2nd, 2010

The final post of Janice Among the Immortals is now up.
Luckily, we know that what seems to happen at the very end can’t be quite as it seems.

But here’s what stuck out for me:

Oxadrenals has asked The Eldest whether he has her blessing to go ahead with his Immortality Project. (This would have been in approximately January of 2010, near as I can make out.) And here’s what The Eldest says:

But shall a man so ungrave make so grave a change on this earth? Is not the gravity of a man like Alexandros more fit, or of a woman like Soraya, to carry so much weight? More fit. But who would we more enjoy to trust? The other. And so, I yet remain indecisive.

Because I do not decide, I do decide, and the amusing man, he carries on. You need not tell him so, for no answer is all the answer he needs.

That’s it. That’s all the protection he has. No more! Look at this post he wrote. – Flyss

The Eldest

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Two updates in 24 hours. Probably that’s because the sequencing clock bumped up 10% in one go.

This installment is titled The Eldest, and it’s truly grand.

I met the Eldest myself, and I was blown away. But I couldn’t come close to describing what she was like.

Janice can. And what she writes is amazing. — Flyss

Confirmation

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Oxadrenals confirms that it was the real Janice who called our commenter Jimmy a “dickwad.” Also, that she’s seriously ill. — Flyss

Zeke Relief

Friday, October 1st, 2010

In installment 7, Zeke/Oxadrenals returns. He’s quite a relief after the insufferably self-righteous Illuminati.

I have lots of pictures of the place where he talked with Janice and gave her a letter to give to the Eldest.  I took them when I was out there with Strattera a few years a few months back.

Here’s the church, with a special Santa Cruz twist:

(See the Buddhist nun?)

Here’s Mission Santa Cruz, just across the street:

And here’s the crumbling original Mission Santa Cruz. (Buildings are mortal.)

Though my pictures don’t show it, these are all clustered near each other. Holy ground, like Zeke says. And a tricky place for someone who feels he has to hide from a disapproving Yawheh!

From here, we will move on to a meeting with the Eldest. — Flyss

Entering the World of the Illuminati

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

In installment 5, we enter the underground world of the Illuminati. Just barely enter it. But enough to see how you get there.

“How,” not like in directions, but in process. Janice calls it “driving into the land of Faerie,” and she means what it feels like to her. Not at all like I imagined. I more or less figured you walk up to something like this and a hidden door opens.

Apparently not.

In the next installment after this one, we meet Alexandros. But right toward the end of this one we do see someone we recognize living down below. — Flyss

(P.S. I’m getting worried that the “walnut” the weird radiologist saw on Janice’s CT-scan in installment 5 of  Narrative 3 might be something bad.)

Blair in Bondage

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

At the end of “Tied-Up, Helpless, Loving” (the latest installment of Narrative 5), Janice plays bondage games with Blair again, and this time he surrenders to it. And you know what? I think it’s the best thing that ever happened to him.

But the first part of the installment is about a different level of bondage: We meet some members of the blue&black organization, and we find that if any one of them were to tell the world about the immortals they’d die instantly. (Or, at least, they think they would, which is still bondage.)

Also they call hangers-on “lice.” I agree that Menniss is a louse, but to call mortals who are hungry for immortality “lice” is disgusting.

I know, I know, this is all written by Oxadrenals, and shows his bias. But with details like this, it’s hard to see the Immortal Illuminati as the good-deed-doers they say they are. Soraya, are you willing to refute anything here? — Flyss

The Blue&Blacks Arrive

Monday, September 27th, 2010

In the most recent installment, the Blue&Blacks,there’s a moment of innocence, and then the helicopters arrive. It’s terrible. — Flyss

People Say Redwood Forests are Beautiful

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

Kate gave the big picture on Narrative 5, Janice Among the Immortals. Here I want to quote the first paragraph of the text (after the opening quotation.) It’s classic Janice.

People say redwood forests are beautiful, but I don’t like them. True, the trees stand there perfectly straight reaching into the sky all cathedral-grand, and you can walk between them like you’re in a park, no shrubs to trip over.

But the reason there’s no shrubs to trip over is that redwood forests block the light with their canopy and poison the ground with their acid bark and basically kill off everything besides themselves. And they also kill each other a lot. Bigger trees choke out smaller trees, and so there’s fallen trunks lying here and there.

Here I was, a little live thing, scurrying around tickling their feet.  “Sorry for living,” I said.

But somehow I don’t think Janice is actually going to get choked out by anyone. Those big guys have a surprise coming. — Flyss

Soraya’s Blue&Blacks — and The Eldest

Friday, September 24th, 2010

Narrative 7 of the Hanger-On covers a lot of ground. Besides containing that great quote Kate talks about, it takes us to a dark beach where we glimpse Soraya’s blue&black paramilitaries, and then witness the intervention of the Eldest.

I happen to have visited several beaches at night when we were in Santa Cruz a few months back, and the scene reminds me of a couple of photos I took back then.

Here’s a Santa Cruz beach with fire circles like the one Saul and Menniss visit:

Here’s a closeup of one of the fire circles (no naked girls like in the story, sorry):

And here’s a cliff probably a lot like the one the blue&blacks came down:

– Flyss

Surgery in the back seat of a car

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

In installment 6 of The Hanger-On, aptly named “Trust,” Menniss has surgery in the back seat of a Lexus.

I went to a dealership and took this photo:

Nice car and all, but eeuuoo! Remind me not to do that, OK?– Flyss

P.S. As for how the chip got there, perhaps Richard Menniss had the same thing happen to him as what I watched agents of Soraya do to the man we referred to as  “the Bounty Hunter.” It’s very similar to what I imagined, except the chip was put his belly rather than his foot.

The one in real life actually had an Illuminati Symbol on it. Yikes. Fills me with a peaceful sense of trust as I contemplate that rabbit hole, don’t you think?

Gruesome yes, but also very funny

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

Gruesome as this whole narrative is, it’s also very funny. From installment 5 of the Hanger-On, titled Under the Canopy:

(Menniss is telling Saul about his doctor friend Lemon, who is something of a doctor to the criminal underworld.)

“Here’s his real tour de force: he installs internal Kevlar shields to protect vital organs.”

“I marvel to hear of it,” Saul says. “This can actually be done?  Does it work well?”

“It works, but its uncomfortable,” Menniss says.  “I wore one over my spleen for awhile, but I’m a stomach sleeper, so I had to take it out.” — Flyss

P.S. If you’re wondering why I’m not showing pictures of the places in the stories, it’s because I can’t go there just now. Not allowed: strict instructions of Oxadrenals and Soraya.  I’m cooling my heels here in Denver, getting frustrated and bored not doing anything. Probably go down the rabbit hole just for that reason alone.

Should I take them up on the invitation?

Monday, September 20th, 2010

It was an odd sensation reading my own words in Soraya’s post. Is this flattery to persuade? Well, I’m flattered. I don’t know how persuaded. Partly. I no longer think of them as evil, anyway.

I mentioned earlier that they’ve invited Strattera and me to go visit their underground world.

I won’t be allowed to photograph much, though. Can I live with that? And Stephen’s afraid we’ll be held as hostages.

I don’t know. I’m thinking about it. Any opinions from readers? — Flyss

Narrative 4: The Hanger-on Richard Menniss

Sunday, September 19th, 2010

The first installments of Narrative 4 of the Immortality Project chronicles are now posted. The title of the entire narrative is “The Hanger-On,” and the subject is Richard Menniss, Bounty Hunter. (Interesting that he’s characterized as a hanger-on rather than as a “bounty hunter,” though he is in fact both.)

We’re seeing things from Richard Menniss’ point of view. He’s frighteningly good at what he does. Not only does he physically invade people’s homes as easily as a razor blade slicing into butter, he’s just as good at invading people psyches. But he does have a conscience, and he’s troubled.

It’s a very ugly episode, but, really, the ugliness we see is in the world he invades, not in his soul. — Flyss

P.S. I’m not ignoring Soraya’s magisterial post. I’m digesting it.

Wild ride!

Friday, September 17th, 2010

The last part of Narrative 3 of the Immortality Project Chronicles has been posted. It’s a wild ride! From fear, to friendship, to philosophy, to a cliffhanger ending that crashes right up against the cliff left hanging in the first narrative.

Narrative 4, I’ve heard, is told from the perspective of Richard Menniss. (I’ll miss Janice, but I know we’ll get back to her.) It’s supposed to start appearing in a day or two. — Flyss

P.S. I’m starting to think I overreacted about Ox. Not sure what got into me.

“Let me talk to you before you kill me”

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

RE: installment 9 of the Mortal Janice.

Janice has fallen into a throughly self-destructive mood. She contacts Saul by email, pretends to be Blair, and goes on her own to meet him. Only when she sees him in person does she seem to recognize the danger she’s in.

I’d gotten used to Blair’s eyes. So innocent and open. But Saul’s eyes weren’t innocent. If he decided I would die, I would die.

“Let me talk to you before you kill me,” she says.

One more installment to go. — Flyss

A rock fallen from the sky

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

I’m starting to feel a bit sorry for Oxadrenals — we all seem to be ganging up. But while we wait for him to defend himself, installment 8 of The Mortal Janice has been posted, titled A Rock Fallen from the Sky.

Considering everything, how much do you want to bet it’s this rock?


That would certainly put a lot of things together!

It looks like Blair is going to get in touch with Saul. I wonder how that will go. We know from the very end of Narrative 3 (The Hafeem Saul) that Saul has been yearning for this. But people aren’t always grateful when someone finally acts nice after being a jerk for a century (literally). — Flyss

PS — I just started reading the newly posted installment 9 of The Mortal Janice,titled “Becoming No One at All.“ It seems that Janice is going on her own to see Saul! — Flyss

It’s not about his trustworthiness

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

It’s not exactly that I doubt his trustworthiness. I’ve been trying to put my finger on what I’m actually feeling. It’s tricky. But it goes something like this:

Oxadrenals says that the problem with the Immortal Illuminati is not they’re evil. In fact, they mean to do good for the world. But the problem with them (according to Ox) is that they think they know what’s good for the world. So if the Illuminati shut down the Immortality Project, it will be to “protect us from ourselves.” They’re willing to make decisions — even big decisions — for other people. And that’s what Ox doesn’t like about them. He thinks it’s dangerous to be so sure about what’s right. What if they consciously have good intentions but unconsciously do things for their own benefit? After all, that’s rather typical.

But … doesn’t Ox himself take on a lot of responsibility on behalf of other people? Think about it: He has his guys kidnap people for their own benefit. Also, he’s sicced the Bounty Hunter (the real one — Richard Menniss) on people. Supposedly, he was going to have me and Strattera observe Menniss to stop him from going overboard.  Actually, that turned out to be just a way of keeping us away from the Immortality Project, but Ox obviously got the idea from something that had already happened: nine months earlier, Menniss had already gone overboard (cutting off Blair’s ear.)  Clearly, Menniss is slightly deranged, and, given that, was it exactly responsible of Oxadrenals to get him going?

And some of Ox’s “jokes” (like, recently, what “Zeke” did with Janice in installment 7 of The Mortal Janice) are kind of deranged themselves.

So, what if the reason Oxadrenals’ vilifies the Immortal Illuminati is that he isn’t the world’s most responsible person and they keep stepping in as the “adults” on the scene? Naturally, he’d resent them. But his opinion wouldn’t really be trustworthy, either. — Flyss

P.S. I want to credit some of our readers, especially “C” and “Observer”, for noticing some of these issues a while ago.

… = Oxadrenals?

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

Continued from my last post.

I’d mentioned how Zeke’s behavior, while amusing, also had a dark, violent edge. But Zeke is obviously meant to be the same person as Howard of Narrative 2 –The Hafeem Saul. And in that narrative, Howard admits to being identical to Alexi, the man who came close to mugging Saul in Moscow in installment 3 of that narrative.

In other words, Howard/Alexi/Zeke have a distinctly weird and frightening side. But think about his:

Description of Howard: “The young man sported a handlebar mustache and goatee and held a silver-handled cane.” (From installment 8 of The Hafeem Saul)

Description of Zeke: “He wore a handlebar moustache and a goatee and carried some kind of funny cane with an ivory handle.” (From installment 7 of The Mortal Janice.)

Description of Oxadrenals: “He wore a theatrical handlebar mustache and a goatee…” (from our sighting of him.)

And, of course, there are other connections, obvious to those who have been reading the narrative.

If Howard = Alexi = Zeke also equals Oxadrenals, and we know that Alexi and Zeke have a real dark side, then maybe our friend Ox isn’t quite so cuddly and innocent as we’ve all been thinking. And, if so, than what if his “arch-enemies” the Immortal Illuminati aren’t so dark as he’s led us to believe?

It’s worth thinking about, anyway. — Flyss

(For new readers: All of the narratives cited here are accessible, and arranged chronologically, here.)

Zeke = Howard = a darker side to someone we know?

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

Installment 7 of The Mortal Janice takes place somewhere I’ve been to recently.

We stopped in Ely, Nevada under a twenty-foot guy with one blue leg straight and the other bent and holding a lariat lit with Christmas lights. The place was a casino with a hotel curled around it. Besides Mr. Big Blue Guy, the place had stirrups, whips, horseshoes, spurs and chain-saw sculptures everywhere. I’d never been to a casino.

The guy is actually holding a pick, not a lariat, and there aren’t any Christmas lights, but otherwise Janice’s description is right. Not bad for writing from memory a few months later.

I didn’t have to go to Ely to photograph it because I’ve been there and done that last year. It’s a garish place there, in the middle of nowhere. And what happens to Janice there, and what she does in reaction, is funny. But in an edgy way.

Or, more than edgy – outright disturbing. “Zeke’s” sense of humor has a distinctly dark and violent edge to it.

Is anyone else thinking what I’m thinking? (continued in my next post) — Flyss

Selling your soul in your sleep

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

Someone visited me too. Unlike Kate, I wasn’t entirely charmed. But I _am_ interested.

They’ve offered to bring me and Strattera on a tour of their current home in Santa Clara. But, as I say, I’m not fully charmed. And, out of stubborn pride, I refuse to let them derail my reading of this narrative. So, please pardon me as I leave that no doubt interesting subject aside, and continue to talk about what I’m reading!

Bubbled up safe in the new BMW, drove on a long black highway west. The sky was clear, but high mountains in the distance wore their own private clouds. Yellow signs every couple of miles said, ‘Watch for eagles on the road.’ I’d never traveled west of Colorado before.

In installment 6 of The Mortal Janice, they drive down Highway 50 toward Ely, Nevada. As they go drive, we learn a lot about Blair’s history, including what happened when he first noticed that he wasn’t aging, how he came to believe that he’d unconsciously sold his soul to the devil, and how Saul rescued him and became his mentor. Also, we discover the origin of the vampire-in-the-coffin legend. (Yeah, Janice herself is skeptical about that last part.) There’s a lot more in it too, but overall it’s a respite from the intensity just before.

Some of this installment will mean a lot more to people who’ve read rather than skipped Narrative 2, The Hafeem Saul. I really recommend reading that, by the way. It’s much slower, but once you adapt it’s wonderful. — Flyss

P.S. Yes, I’m in shock at being visited by a rep from the Immortal Illuminati. But I refuse to give them the satisfaction of showing it. Yet.

Bondage as psychotherapy

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

Installment 5 of the The Mortal Janice, (Narrative 3 of  The Immortality Project) is titled Bondage as Psychotherapy. It’s rather electric. But it also puts a lot of things together.

Really, the idea starts in Installment 3, Connecting the Dots. Janice gets Blair a piercing, in part to help disguise him, but also because she instinctively senses he needs to feel something. In Installment 4, Poisoning Myself, Janice reflects in various ways on how limitation and wounding put one in touch with life.

In this installment, she takes it further.

Blair has been getting a CT-scan looking for GPS trackers in his body. (I had one of those, for the same reason.) Janice comes back from just barely not having sex with Marcus, a man she just met, and finds out that Blair’s clean. More than that: the radiologist says that his body is utterly perfect. She gets a CT herself, and discovers that, like most people, her body is full of internal imperfections; she might even have a brain tumor (though she probably doesn’t.) The comparison angers her, and that night when they have sex she is aggressive, and introduces him to bondage. Her anger is also love, though, and when she sees how he reacts her heart opens to him.

He wasn’t playing at being scared; he was damn scared, even by loops of scotch tape.

And he loved it. We broke the tape pretty quick, which would have happened even with regular sex but this was hot, hot sex. I leaned all my weight on one of his arms to make it stay up by the post and told him to pretend he was still tied and not to touch me. Extremely hot.

He was surrendering. He was surrendering to me, and in his mind it was more than play. For a guy like him, it was real surrender.

Bondage psychotherapy.

I’m not sure who cried first, me or my downed angel.

There’s a great deal else in the installment too. Janice’s internal dialogue is entrancing: sexy, hilarious, poetic and perceptive all at once . — Flyss

P.S. This section also gives new meaning to the title of Installment 7 of Narrative 1. :-)

Immortals must find it disgusting …

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

Another installment is up, with the ungentle title of “Poisoning Myself.”

It begins with Janice and Blair jumping on a train at Denver Union Station. Stephen will shortly post on the content. I want show you some photos so you can picture it. Also, the fact that we’re dealing with Immortals gives one an extra perspective, as you’ll see.

It’s a grand old building, but a security guard there told me a lot of the old pretty stuff is about to be torn out. Figures.

Here’s the facade:

(Click on the images to enlarge them.)

A view of the reverse side, with train tracks visible:

Here’s a wide angle view of the old fashioned waiting room. It’s strangely bleak and empty in there. I felt lost, but in a lovely, nostalgic way.

Here’s another view, this one showing the entrance to the boarding area. Those wooden seats are wonderfully weird.

Here’s the decorated walkway down to the trains. Easy to imagine Blair and Janice sneaking down here to hop on a train.

But they’re going to rip all this out to put in a spanking new pedestrian walkway. That’s our disposable culture for you. We even dispose of monuments!

Immortals must find it disgusting. — Flyss

Why all the personal stuff?

Saturday, September 11th, 2010

As I mentioned in my last post, I have an idea why these chronicles of the Immortality Project are spending so much time on Janice and Blair’s personal interactions rather than skipping straight ahead to the exciting project itself.

Kate suggested that Oxadrenals wants us to remember the human side to all this, and that’s why he’s spending so much time on the people. And I agree. But I think there’s another reason.

Keep in mind that during the period that we transition to immortality, the world will be full of contrasts between the immortal and the non-mortal. Not everyone will become immortal at once. There will be haves and have nots. So, the issues Janice is facing are issues we will all face. We need to understand them!– Flyss

[Stephen's note to new readers:Eight narratives of the Immortality Project are being published in installments.  These are non-fiction renditions of actual events leading up to the present day. The authors are Oxadrenals, Janice, and a set of professional writers. This page shows all the narratives in their proper sequence.  The narrative begin in late 2009. In the present, the genetic sequencing of a True Immortal is nearly complete. The narratives will reach the present at approximately the moment that the sequencing finishes. There is a considerable chance of intervention at that time by the Immortal Illuminati. One of the purposes of publishing these narratives is to help dissuade them from intervening, as explained here. These Illuminati have recently discovered this blog, but they have not yet contacted us.]

What’s so magical about a rainbow is that it doesn’t last

Saturday, September 11th, 2010

In the third installment of the Mortal Janice, Connecting the Dots, Janice is doing a lot of reflecting on the contrast between immortality and mortality, between perfection and imperfection, and trying to connect the dots between them. As part of this, around the middle of the installment, she forces Blair to get a piercing. (There’s a practical value too — to disguise him as they flee.) After the piercing is done, she writes.

Blair looked good with the stud in his nose. Less perfect and more human.

Interesting isnt it? We need imperfection. A little later on, she writes something even more interesting (and also, in my opinion, painfully beautiful):

Blair is staring at her, “his eyes all amazing.”

I’d seen that look once before, on the faces of a bunch of drug dealers and other friendly assholes who hang around my neighborhood quickstop.  I’d been stuck inside the quickstop for awhile behind someone who’d bought a lot of lottery tickets and needed to scratch every one open and then buy some more depending on how they scratched out.  But I didn’t mind waiting because in the real world outside it started to pour.  The guy scratched and scratched, and it stopped raining, and I bought my frozen burritos and when I left the quickstop I got hit full in the face by a double rainbow, a full double, stretching across the whole sky and with a piece of a third bow close to the ground, and the pimps and the drug dealers staring at it, this gift from the sky, their attitude gone, no fucking with each other, grateful, exposed, open like little kids who’ve never been hurt.

Blair was staring at me like I was a rainbow.  Part of me loved it.  Part of me hated it.  Because what’s so magical about a rainbow is that it doesn’t last.

You have to remember that she’s entranced by his immortality; as kind of a mirror image, she’s afraid what he loves about her is her evanescence.

I don’t think she’s right, though. I think he senses that she can make him more human.

But how does this all relate to  The Immortality Project?Why are we hearing about Janice’s insecurities rather than skipping straight ahead to the exciting stuff: an underground laboratory, guys with black helicopters, etc.? I’ll give you my personal ideas on that in my next post. – Flyss

As Beautiful as the Sky

Friday, September 10th, 2010

In As Beautiful as the Sky, Janice has it bad. Blair’s immortality right up close is making her a little crazy.

Blair wore his heavy coat and a black watch cap pulled low to cover his missing ear. Behind him, the sky put on its typical dawn show: streaming ramps of light, cathedrals in the clouds, heavenly mountains of glory, all the usual. He looked just as beautiful as the sky.


This reminds me more than a bit of how intoxicated Kate became when we first started to receive messages straight from Oxadrenals. I don’t want to embarrass her by reposting The Power of Glamor to Glamour, but you can just click on it :-) — Flyss

P.S. The Rilke poem that opens Narrative 3 says it all.

Oxadrenals back on the site!

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010

His post will appear shortly. He’s already posted a few comments here and there. – Flyss

P.S. I see that Installment 13 is now up. Another long one.

So is she an immortal?

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010

I just read through installment 12 a second time, and this time I didn’t let all the sexy stuff distract me. As much.

Janice sure seems to be dropping a lot of hints that she’s and Immortal. But she has an incredibly sordid lifestyle! Would an Immortal really live like that? — Flyss

Unbearably sexy

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010

You might have found installment 12 unbearably beautiful, but, shallow me, I found it almost unbearably sexy.

Instead of a black hoody, she now had on a black cotton shirt that could have been worn by a man, but was unbuttoned far enough to show the top of a lacy black bra. Around her neck, she wore a thin strip of leather like an evaporated dog collar. She’d ruffled her hair and it showed a hint of curl. Though rounded, she wasn’t heavy. Along with the nose stud and the bars in her ears, she now had a ring through her lower lip. She wore red pants that reached a few inches beneath the knees, and on one calf a long tattoo in the shape of a dragon extended down to her ankle. Her feet were naked in brown sandals. He thought she might be wearing clear lipstick.

Yeeii. — Flyss

The photo Blair can’t take his eyes off is of what’s called a corset piercing. Here’s an example I found online. It’s not exactly the same as what Blair describes, but in case you’ve never seen one at all it’ll give you a sense of what they’re like. (Corset piercings are generally temporary. FYI: They’re popular in the bondage community.)

Can’t be a coincidence

Monday, September 6th, 2010

Well here’s an unexpected wrinkle.

In the very first paragraph of the first installment of the The Immortal Blair, he writes,

In the distance, the red lights of a refinery or fertilizer factory hung in the sky like ephemeral constellations.

The same phrase reappears in installment 8, and it soon becomes clear that Blair is on his way into Fort Collins.

Now here’s the interesting part. I’d driven into Fort Collins from the south, and so I missed it. But Strattera was exploring other approaches, and she discovered that if you arrive from the north east (which fits just as well considering Blair’s erratic route out of Kansas City), you see these in the distance:

Look familiar? They should. On her hurried way up to Cheyenne, Speed Demon paused for a considerable time right beneath those same red lights.

This can’t be a coincidence! –Flyss

P.S. Yes, I’d even used my images of those lights to decorate the Immortal Blair web page. But I was just fooling around trying to create something mysterious looking. I hadn’t expected any actual connection.

At the very beginning of the seduction, he finds himself touched

Monday, September 6th, 2010

In installment 11 of The Immortal Blair, titled “So Much for His Vow of Solititude,” Blair follows Janice into an all-night liquor store, which he describes as a “gaudy, warm hidden space, its vivid labels and brightly colored bottles a crow’s idea of paradise.” Bizarrely, the man at the cash register wears a button that reads “10 years of sobriety.” Blair may have his 10 -15 years of sobriety each “frame” of his life. (That’s how he describes the periods during which he lives in one place, before he has to change identities and disappear.)

He means to seduce her so he can hide from Menniss. He’s very good at seduction. Extremely good! But, to his surprise, he finds himself touched by her. — Flyss

Running in terror

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

In installment 10, Blair is running in terror from Menniss, who’s found him at the motel. He manages to get away, but finds himself in a really sketchy neighborhood. Then he sees a possible refuge ahead.

The back of the supermarket rose high ahead of him, red and gray fake brick. Off to the left, after a gap, he saw the rear side of a strip mall that stretched off for hundreds of yards, a long wall neatly divided by blue doors. Each door had its own matching dumpster illuminated by a bright yellow insect light.

I found the supermarket, and the spot he’s talking about.


He ends up hiding in the loading dock behind the store, feeling a bit too intimate with dumpsters. I checked it out. It’s a truly scuzzy place. It must have been truly humiliating for him to have to hide there.

Then, in installment 11, he looks out from his hiding place, and sees Janice walking across the back parking lot. Here’s the actual view.

She walks through this gap,

and he follows after her.

I’ll have more to say about their meeting in my next post. — Flyss

Following him into the city

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

I followed Blair’s route into the outskirts of the city. Here’s how he described it in installment 9.

The blocky rectangular form of a bowling alley pushed its yellow shoulders out toward the street, and he imagined the thunder of bowling balls, the friendly clatter of pins. Perhaps he’d go bowling. But not tonight. He passed the auto parts stores, labor agencies, used car lots, all-night liquor stores, pay day loan sharks, thrift shops, pawnshops, downscale strip malls, tattoo parlors, the typical flora at the edge of a city. He loved places like these, so full of gaps, of broken areas to hide in.

I found the city pretty much like that. Here’s the bowling alley, pushing its shoulders out into the street as advertised:

Here’s the auto parts store,

the labor agency,

the cash advance joint,

and the street as a whole:

“So full of gaps, of broken areas to hide in.” — Flyss

Pilgrimage sites of the future?

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

I’ve been following in Blair’s footsteps, partly to verify if the story is true, and partly just to get a feel for our lonely immortal. Also I feel that I’m the first pilgrim to visit what will be pilgrimage sites of the future.

As you’ll already have noticed if you’ve been reading along with The Immortal Blair, our guy has a tendency to paint his world in saturated colors. Here’s the apartment he had been living in when Menniss found him.

Fairly florid digs, wouldnt you say?

His neighbors didn’t have a lot to say about him, except that he was drop-dead gorgeous.

Here’s the Denny’s he arrived at in Kansas City. I found the waitress he flirted with there. She remembered him all right, even though it was almost a year ago! And she verified that he ran out of there chased by a big guy.

If the Immortality Project succeeds, these places will become pilgrimage sites. On the other hand, if the Immortal Illuminati suppress the project, these places will become pilgrimage sites anyway. Alexandros will have to have them razed to the ground and put up razor wire to stop people coming to visit what might have been. –Flyss

P.S. I notice that we’re back in the darkness again.

Janice at last!

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

In this very long new installment of The Immortal Blair, our guy finally arrives somewhere. Strangely, though, where he lands is a disgusting fleabag motel. (It’s in Fort Collins, Colorado, and I’ll shortly be visiting there to photograph the actual sites where this narrative takes place.)

The installment is titled The Woman at the Desk, and I don’t think I’m giving anything way by pointing out that she’s obviously Janice.

The fact is, I don’t know who the heck Janice is, except that Oxadrenals and Saul have spent an inordinate amount of  time doing things for her, she’s the first-person-author of narratives 3, 5 and 7, and she’s sexy as heck.  Oh, and also she’s central to the entire Immortality Project. God knows why. — Flyss

Forever made whole

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

In Letting go of everything, the 8th installment of The Immmortal Blair, we reach the flashback at the beginning of the piece. To go past it, Blair has to deal with his pain. And the way he does so is heartwrenching: He opens the window and lets the wind blow away the photo of Kathryn.

He let go of Kathryn. He let go of everything. He took refuge in the one companion he’d never have to abandon, this marvelous creation, this perfect body: immortal, forever renewed, forever made whole.

Now he’s free. He sees a city ahead, and says “it’s time to go somewhere rather than flee.”

But he’s always fleeing. That his whole life. I get it. There’s nothing whole about him at all. He’s deeply broken.

Yes, Kate, I’m a bit seduced by him. Is it the urge to rescue? To comfort? To reach him where he hurts? To heal?

And I’m rather jealous of Janice, because she gets to try. (But that’s in an upcoming installment.)– Flyss

Kathryn cuts through

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

In Kathryn, the sixth installment of the The Immortal Blair, Menniss is terribly cruel. But he uses that cruelty to cut through to Blair’s humanity.

Menniss shows him a photo of Kathryn, the woman Blair married when he lived in Australia in the late ’50s and the early ’60s, and then abandoned by pretending to die in the outback.

“She still misses you,” Menniss says.  “After half a century.  Isn’t that pathetic? ” Blair cradled the photo in his hands and stared at the image: a terribly old woman.  A woman dying of age.

Dying of age! Age as a murderer. Because that’s what it is.

And then Blair makes this heartbreaking vow:

He’d made the resolution many times before, and always broken it, but he made it again: No more relationships.  No wives, no lovers, no friends, no children.  He would live entirely alone, keep company with none but the one companion he never had to betray, never needed to abandon: his perfect, timeless body.  – Flyss

He left his dog to die?

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

Oh God, he left his dog to die. And he really doesn’t care?

Installment 5. The Work of a Master
in The Immortal Blair

I don’t believe he doesn’t care. I disagree with what you wrote, Kate. I don’t think he’s totally narcissistic by nature. It think it’s a reaction to how much he’s lost. He can’t bear it, so he shuts down his feelings. But they’re there.

He’s so terribly lonely. He’s been listening to all the things Menniss has found out by essentially stalking him (things that I’d found out too, by the way) and instead of just being horrified he has this reaction:

Blair found this third-person analysis of his life inordinately pleasurable; it had been more than a hundred years since he’d spoken with anyone who knew he was immortal.

Imagine it: No one knows who he really is. And has to leave everyone to die. — Flyss

“The Letter”

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

The second installment (“The Letter”) of The Immortal Blair touched a nerve.

“Blair” is seriously into seduction. This is the same sensitive fellow who marries women over and over, even though he knows he’s going to have to disappear after about fifteen years, when his immortality starts to show.

But I think he’s going to get his. Here’s the last paragraph of this installment:

He drove on small country roads, using various tricks he’d seen in movies: doubling back, making sudden turns, hiding his car out of sight. When he felt confident no one could be following him, he took to the freeway. He drove all night and somewhat at random, with no fixed destination other than leaving Texas behind. At dawn, he found himself at the outskirts of Kansas City. The geographic circle of his possible overnight travel now covered thousands of square miles. Menniss couldn’t possibly find him. He was anonymous again. He was hidden and safe.

Somehow I don’t think that he’s going to be as safe as he expects to be. – Flyss

P.S. The letter in “The Letter” is pretty cool.

P.P.S. As an aside, the quote from Saul in the The Letter is almost, though not quite, word for word the same as in The Hafeem Saul.

Switching gears

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

I get it that we rushed to start posting the story because we wanted to help protect Oxadrenals’ physical immortality project from attack by the Immortal Illuminati. And I also get it that Kate is releasing the story in small bits so as to influence Alexandros and crew without directly threatening them.

But the first installments of The Immortal Blair are so far removed from all that, it’s hard to concentrate on it.

Still, I remember how much trouble I had switching gears to read the Hafeem Saul, and how much I ended up loving it once I did, that I’m going to try.

So here I go, pitching in:

In the first installment, The Crown Jewel of Creation (which was mislinked before — it’s fixed now) you can already see the narcissism of the guy. Definitely reminds me of the Aussie, and from all the context I assume that’s who “Blair” actually is. But it’s weird to think that having an immortal body is a bit of a curse, in a way.

Not like being a vampire is a curse. We already know that True Immortals can die. It’s more like the kind of responsibility that falls on you when you have custody of something precious.

Like the Queen’s Crown Jewels, for example. — Flyss

Twist my arm

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

You want to use my photographs? Oh, twist my arm! — Flyss

Nothing to forgive there!

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

You’re HafeemObservingAll? Cool!

Nothing to forgive there. You loved Glenn as much as I did. And he treasured you. It only makes sense he let you in on his posthumous life. And I’m sure he would have wanted you to keep things as mysterious as possible for as long as possible.

But, now, what about that damn ear? — Flyss

Physical Immortality: It’s really happening?

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Oh. Yeah, I see. Yes, you’re probably right.

I’m sure you are.

Anyway, no real harm. The adventures were great!

And I’ve looked over Stephen’s stuff. My God, it’s really happening, isn’t it? Oxadrenal’s big project: Physical immortality (OK, “indefinite life extension”) for everyone. Jeez! — Flyss

P.S. They used someone’s ear? What the heck?

And who’s this Janice chick everyone’s running around for?

Oh Kate

Monday, August 30th, 2010

You knew several months ago? And you kept it secret from me?

Oh, Kate. Please tell me there was a very good reason. — Flyss

F_ liar! Why should we believe a word he says?

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

What the F? The Aussie is already here? We’ve been following a fake Bounty Hunter? And Oxadrenals has known all this?

He says he’s about to achieve physical immortality. But I’m kind of having a hard time with all this. Why should we believe anything he says, now? He’s a fucking liar. — Flyss

It’s happening NOW?

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

What do you mean it’s happening now? What’s happening?
You wrote: “Once we find [so and so] we’ll go ahead and [do this and that] … and then we’ll [do that and this]” And then, somehow, physical immortality is on its way, that is if Antipollus doesn’t stop you.

Have you found the Aussie? Are you close to physical immmortality? Are you fighting against Antipollus?

Stephen, do you know what he means? — Flyss

What she said

Friday, August 27th, 2010

The Molly in black spoke to us as we passed. Here’s what she said:

“Did you think we were going to hurt you? The Molly doesn’t hurt the mortals who love her. It’s only natural that mortals should love her, she understands that. “(She didn’t actually use the name “Molly,” but a different name that sounds a little like it.)

She put her hand to her waist, and I thought she was pulling out a gun, but it wasn’t a gun — it was a kind of old fashioned walkie-talkie. Except that wasn’t what it was either. It did look something like a walkie-talkie, but it was inlaid with jade and had strange script written on it, and the antenna was made of black glass.

“This is the scepter of the Molly,” she said, more or less. “With it, I can take you in to us. You can come to live where we live. The Molly would take care of you. You could even become like me, and serve her in her in her own image.”

I pulled away, ready to bolt, and she looked sad. “There is no other chance for you,” she said. “If you leave, you will not have the chance again.”

Strattera asked, “If we leave, what will you do?”

“Nothing,” she said. “We will never look for you, never see you, never touch you.” She held out the “scepter” thing.

I hesitated. I don’t know why.

And then I felt Strattera next to me, and I stepped away from the Molly.  I took another step, and then I turned and ran. We both ran out of there. We got in the car, and headed off fast as we could, high up into the mountains, where the walls of a canyon enfolded us, and we drove until it was dark, and we kept on driving. — Flyss

And then she spoke to us

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

It was a white knuckle ride, but nothing bad happened. No helicopters. No ambushes. No frying pans. We glided out of the Federal lands, and came down out of the mountains into the ye olde yuppie/hippie college town of Boulder, Colorado.

I  was still expecting to find Mollies at every turn as we pivoted through the town (no longer going fast because they have traffic cameras on every lampost here, and you can go to jail for reckless endangerment if you crowd a bicyclist.) But everything stayed fine. Boulder is not exactly my kind of city — it’s a tad too tame — but I do like it, and no matter how yuppified, I still have fond memories of the Pearl Street Mall And especially the Boulder Bookstore.

There were crowds of people everywhere, musicians, jugglers, German tourists and the like, and it just wasn’t the sort of place where servants of immortals are likely to parachute in and shoot you. Strattera and walked hand in hand down from the top of mall and I was finally beginning to truly relaxed when we saw her.

She was walking out of my beloved Boulder Bookstore, looking away from us, just a young woman with reddish hair who could be anyone.

I think I might have paused for a second, but that was all. I mean, people do have red hair.

But, as I might not have stressed enough earlier, the Mollies are not actually clones of each other. They’re clearly different people. At the airport, they were all dressed similarly, it’s true, and they all had light skin and various shades of red hair, and looked about 25, but that was all that was the same about them.

This woman wasn’t dressed at all like the Mollies we’d been looking at. She was just a girl with red hair, and so I shook my fears away and we walked past her.

And then she spoke to us. (continued in my next post) — Flyss

From the frying pan into the fire

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

(Continued from my last post)

Strattera gunned the engine, and we took off into a maze of country roads. Of course, they could spot us from the air, but they must have already dropped as many parachutists as they could spare, and no more came down. Still, our friends had an operation on the ground, too, and any minute now they might come after us. Strattera was all for going to the nearest police station or sheriff’s office and wanted me to use my iPhone to find one. But I was afraid those guys might be in on it.

My idea was to get to the nearest crowd of people and get lost in them. The closest city was Boulder, and I knew a shortcut to it, a road that cuts through this rocky area:

We sped along, making great time,  and I was beginning to relax. Then I realized I’d taken us from the frying pan into the fire; I’d been afraid of the local police, but now we were passing through Federal lands: the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, with its test wind farms and this giant parabolic trough pointed up at the sky collecting sun.

There were structures like these, too, enormously tall, and I thought  I saw Mollies in every one.

It was a white knuckle ride.   (Continued in my next post) — Flyss

Fleeing

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

When the parachutist came down not more than a quarter mile away, it finally dawned on us what was happening: Molly’s entourage had spotted us, and they were sending down some nice folks to check on what we were doing. Yes, this was in broad daylight, but there’s a parachuting club at the airport, and it would take awhile for anyone watching to notice that they were landing in all the wrong places.

We tore out of there, but another chutist came down on the road ahead.  Luckily, Strattera’s a crazy driver under stress, and she made one of those extra special U-turns where you go into a spin on purpose and then come out of it at the right time. We sped out in our new direction, but we hadn’t gone very far when we ran across another of them, and this time there really wasn’t anything we could except drive off an embankment or run him down. Strattera hit the brakes. As we skidded to a stop, the parachutist brought up something that looked like a gun, and it might have been the end of this blog post right then and there when who should come screeching up from behind the fellow but the Bounty Hunter, in a black Mercedes.

He didn’t mean to help us; I don’t think he even registered we were there. He was just running, himself, and apparently he didn’t mind driving over someone. Or, more likely, it was just that he had decades of practice, and knew the guy would get out of the way at the last second. Anyway, the black Mercedes came roaring up, the parachutist jumped down the embankment, and we suddenly had a clear stretch of road ahead.

For the moment, anyway. (Continued in my next post) — Flyss