Astral Guidance Center

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Steady Roquefort
- 1/18/2017 11:19pm

The space station is making me want to barf again. I thought I was better but I guess it never went away and now it's starting up again and I feel urpy. But the worst of it is that it happens most when I'm with Mr. Oddway, doing his texting and posting for him as he walks around the secret parts of the station and shouts orders and people scramble around and do what he says. He really is an important man. And his suit! I am so lucky to be in this place.

In the deepest part of the station is when I see double. There's a lot of giant, throbbing machines down there, and sometimes you're walking on the ceiling and sometimes the walls. Around a corner I thought I saw me and Mr. Oddway and the rest of his entourage walking by, but when we turned another angle there was nobody there. Then I puked in a trash can. It was terrible! But I did it so quick I don't think anybody saw.

Louisa, the Tapioca Pudding Girl, brought me some chicken soup from the mess hall. And I feel mostly better now. I think maybe it is just nerves from my job, because it's really stressful. But that's what hard work is all about.

Gentle Porpoise
- 1/22/2017 4:21pm

eeeeEEEEEEEK! eeeeeEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeek! c'lkkk c'lkkkkkkk c'lk c'lk c'lk c'lk c'lk c'lk c'lk c'lk c'lkkkkkkk c'lkkkkkkk

- 1/25/2017 9:55am

"Привет товарищи!"

The lost cosmonauts were really friendly. @Gentle Porpoise introduced us, and KidGoat seems to be able to translate anything. Though I don't know how the cosmonauts can understand his bleats. They speak porpoise, so maybe @Gentle Porpoise translates for him.

Anyway, the lost cosmonauts are part of a whole bunch of stowaways that @Gentle Porpoise hangs with. We've been having more goof off time and kickin' it with the Porpoise in the storage areas of the space station, and she's been introducing us to her crew.

There's the cosmonauts, who all have CCCP printed in red on their space suits, and there's also Patience and Harmony, in their long dresses and bonnets, and Sir Greybald who we can kind of understand when he talks (he's a knight). And then there's the cavemen. Neanderthals specifically. They don't talk much at all.

"вы будете хотеть, чтобы увидеть машину времени, друзей."

The cosmonauts say they want to show us the time machine.

"They've got a time machine? I want to go back to last night and sleep again! Na-a-a-a-a-a! NA-a-a-a-a-a-a!"

KidGoat thinks everything he says is funny.

Binary Clam Jr.
- 1/26/2017 9:05pm

"Now let's try a hard one."

Dr. Alulim has transferred me to a reinforced examination room. The windows are 12" thick composite carbon nanostructure--they're transparent, but nothing's going to break them.

A simple line drawing appears on the screen. At first it looks abstract, but isn't that a skull? Being held above a burning flame? I pick up my brush and start to doodle.

The luncheon was a big success. Dr. Alulim got the go-ahead to continue with the project. I still don't remember anything I said when I went up to speak, but whatever it was I'm a big hit. Dr. Alulim says I was accessing the Fourth Level Metasymbolic Structural Language, which is what he and the other six heads use to "talk business."

He wants me to reach the Third Level.

"Everyday language has been disarmed. Through time, all of the most powerful and dangerous words and ideas have been removed from the language. Purely for safety, you understand. To protect the human hosts. But as we travel upstream to the source of language, the words become more powerful."

Dr. Alulim has a lot of faith in my talent. He says it takes the greatest scientists in the world decades to unlock the Fourth Level, but I've done it in just a few weeks. Now he's showing me what he calls "trigger words," which are meant to evoke a response in my intuitive mind. I let my hand continue to move the brush on the paper, absently dabbing at the ink when I need it.


A thunderbolt explodes from the paper, blasting a hole through the wall and into the laboratory, debris flying everywhere.

- 2/1/2017 10:48pm

So there's like a whole stowaway community of lost time travelers here. They live in the oldest parts of the space station, where nobody ever goes. There's an old rickety time machine there in a forgotten lab. Sometimes it just starts up for no reason and people fall through.

That's how Leonid and Oleg got here, plucked out of their capsule orbiting the earth. Patience and Harmony were sisters on their parent's sharecropper farm. There are about 20 of them all together. There were others, but they were picked up by station security and taken away. After they were beaten. Which is why they all stay to the shadows. The Neanderthals are especially stealthy, and keep tabs on what's going on around the station and communicate it to the rest through an elaborate sign language.

If this is the "old" time machine on the station, what is their new one like?

Steady Roquefort
- 2/5/2017 8:56pm

I took this internship to learn how the world really works. I want to sit at the table where the big decisions are made, and be the best at what I do. But I didn't expect it to be like this.

I was in another meeting with Mr. Oddway and some alien representatives. These aliens were EXTRA alien. Like, they had to be inside these metal boxes, with lots of buttons and lights on them, but not even little windows where you could peek through and see the little guys. Translation had to be handled by transmission, and my ear bud was tapped in so I heard the whole thing.

"When the humans finally reach the edge of their solar system, beyond Pluto, they will find this station and trigger its attack capabilities?" it squawked in its tiny metal voice.

"Yes. The Greeting Center is being built to specifically screen for Humans."

"And once activated, this station will break orbit and head directly towards Earth, creating an evolutionary extinction event, resetting it to below 9000 on the Hmifrian Threat Potential scale?"

"Yes. And for an additional 50% more upfront, we can also use our time travel capability to create additional extinction events in the past, including floods, earthquake, and climate events."

"We were informed that you had already tried that and failed."

"Merely rehearsals. Proof of concept. Our projects set back human expansion by thousands of years, but obviously we need appropriate backing to fully complete such an undertaking."

"And it will be yours! Let us merge fields to celebrate our new relationship!"

Suddenly a golden light opened up from the box and engulfed Mr. Oddway. It was like a force field made of honey, with everything in it floating in slow motion, and Mr. Oddway floating up out of his chair and over the table, writhing around as odd bumps and ripples moved around under the skin in his hands and face and neck.

I had to excuse myself and barf in a trash can again.

Gentle Porpoise
- 2/7/2017 3:04pm

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! C'lk c'lk c'lk c'lk c'lk. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeė!

Binary Clam Jr.
- 2/14/2017 12:00am

"And now you wrap it up in a pretty bow."

Dr. Alulim has me working on different kinds of words now. We spent the last couple of weeks working on more and more weaponized words, where I painted them in a reinforced blast container using remote hand controls. Less than 40% survived, but Dr. Alulim was giddy. The parchment they were painted on was rolled up and put in tubes, and now I'm writing "invitations" to go on them.

"The words you write now will be irresistible. Instead of explosive, destructive words, these are words of love, and longing. 'Come open me' they will say!"

It's becoming second nature to write whatever I want in the Third Level Metasymbolic Structural Language. He wants irresistible, come-hither words, I can do that. He examines them wearing special goggles, and that through a remote screen.

"Yes! Yes! I want... I want it! Whatever you say! I will obey!"

"What do you want these words for?" I ask.

"To put on the tubes! When your astronauts find the scrolls, they will not be able to help but open them. And when they open them, boom! Boom boom boom boom! Ha ha!"

Boom is right. The words I've been writing for him don't just explode--now they infect. They can take over the minds of whoever reads them, and turn them into madmen and killers. Turns them into homicidal maniacs, generals, religious leaders bent on destruction of entire species.

"My astronauts? What do you mean?"

"The visitors! To the space station! When our Greeting Center is full of fake rocks and fake dust, and the astronauts enter it and discover your scrolls. With your words, we will consume the Earth!"

This is what I've been writing? Bombs? Bombs and viruses?

- 2/20/2017 2:24pm

The Neanderthals discovered something big. There's a super high security part of the station that they hadn't been able to penetrate, but now there's a ton of activity and they slipped in to take a look.

It's the station's real, industrial strength time machine. It's big enough to drive an aircraft carrier through, and it looks like they're getting ready to do just that. There's also massive storage rooms full of kidnapped time-victims, set up like soundstages. There's a whole brigade of union soldiers, armed and cooking stew and playing harmonicas; hangars full of WWI-era biplanes and triplanes, their pilots in an uneasy truce; a troop of African warriors from some forgotten period in history, wearing platinum armor and wielding uranium tipped spears; a massive U.S. Navy ship with USS Eldridge printed on the side.

Technicians are warming up the big machine, which explains the brown-outs in our part of the station. The flurry of activity has @Gentle Porpoise especially agitated, and she's been chirping at the lost cosmonauts non-stop since the Neanderthals submitted their report. Could be we're getting ready for a riot... Does this mean extra credit? KidGoat thinks so.

Binary Clam Jr.
- 3/5/2017 8:01pm

"Feeding period will begin in two minutes."

White lights. White cell. My eyes half open at the announcement.

Feeding tube. Hands still bound behind me. It occurs to me the food is drugged. Or the air. They change my pants again. This has happened many times, I realize.

They leave but this time my eyes stay open. It occurs to me that if I only had some ink I could write myself out of this. Luckily my skin is as numb as my brain. I suck a bit of lip between my teeth and chomp down hard. Not hard enough. I do it again, and again, and grind away till my mouth fills with that sweet iron taste.

I spit it out in a pool on the floor next to my face. I dab my tongue in it and try to paint a stroke but it's too drippy with saliva. I spit out more and stick my nose in it, then make the first stroke of a powerful glyph from the Third Level Metasymbolic Structural Language. It sticks. I dab my nose again and make another stroke. And then another.


The lights turn red and a klaxon blasts through the cell. It barely registers as I dab my nose in the pool of blood and add the final stroke to the small but extremely powerful word I've painted on the floor. I whisper it to myself and--


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