Eris Pettibone

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Pyramids in the Sky
7/25/2021 11:29pm

The pyramids in the sky! I know they're beautiful, but.

Pyramids in the Sky
7/29/2021 5:30pm

When the pyramids in the sky first appeared -- like, the very instant they appeared--everybody of course freaked out. I mean, they were giant, upside-down, gunmetal gray floating pyramids that looked as big as cities. Those little bumps and squares on them--as big as skyscrapers?

But then the next instant, nobody was freaking out. Because the pyramids in the sky had been there forever and always. Everybody remembered them, and they were in all the history books, and in the ancient history too. There were even cave paintings of them. And stories and songs and religions... they were completely woven into our history. All of humankind had grown up in their shadows. They were as familiar features as the sun or the moon.

So why am I the only one who remembers that they only appeared a couple of days ago?

Pyramids in the Sky
8/1/2021 9:26pm

"Well, I don't really believe all that stuff, about there being angels in them," Alyssa tells me at lunch in the commons. "I mean, nobody's ever taken a picture of one, right? And the pastors watch them all the time."

She's right, of course. There's no scientific evidence of any angels or aliens or life forms of any kind related to the pyramids. There's stuff in scripture about seraphim and djinn, and there's petroglyphs of one eyed people in space suits. But since the modern era -- the scientific era -- there's never been anything like that recorded.

"But the pyramids have been there forever and science can't explain them," Alyssa continues. "No radiation, no radio waves, no electromagnetic forces we can measure. Even when we fly balloons right up next to them we can't even touch them--we just bounce right off. All we can do is see them. And go around them."

"And so that's.... God, you think?"

"Oh who knows. But it's what church is about. Will you come?"

Alyssa was inviting me to her church picnic. It sounded weird, but I liked Alyssa.

And I also remembered that there aren't any pyramids in the sky. Or there weren't. Until recently.

"Sure. Pick me up at 11?"

Pyramids in the Sky
8/7/2021 10:51pm

Alyssa's church picnic wasn't that weird. Just a bunch of regular folks at a park on a nice day with hot dogs and potato salad and paper plates.

There was a pyramid in the sky, of course, because if the weather is clear you can always see at least one. No matter where you are.

We played SPUD and some kids were stacking cups (in pyramid shapes, of course), and the pastors in their pyramid-shaped hats said some things about the pyramids, about them being ancient and unknowable and how it was awesome. Just like they had been there forever.

But I knew they hadn't. It was getting ever-so-slightly harder to remember, though--the time without the giant sky pyramids. Because I was definitely living in a world where they'd been here since before recorded history.

And yet things weren't that different. You'd figure something like giant unexplainable upside down floating pyramids in the sky might have a significant effect on the development of civilization. And I guess I'm not expert in all the details, but whatever happened, there were still suburbs full of people and parks and hardware stores and fast food places and tall buildings and cars and strip malls.

Seemed to me like most people just didn't think much about them much at all. Most people just kind of blotted them out, or considered them part of the scenery. Most people weren't putting any thought into it. Most people weren't going to church.

"Mostly just because my parents make me," Alyssa said. "But, it's chill."

We were sitting underneath a tree across the field from the picnic. It was winding down.

Alyssa put my hand in her hand and squeezed it.

"What are you doing tomorrow?" she asked.

Pyramids in the Sky
8/14/2021 7:57pm

"So. Do you like it here?" Alyssa asks.

We're at Brain Freeze, the ice cream shop in town. It was here in the other world too, without the upside down floating sky pyramids.

"Sure," I answered. "I've been coming here for years."

Alyssa looked at me coyly. "Not 'here' here. I mean, this whole place. This universe."

I looked at her confusedly.

"I had to try out soooooooo many places. You wouldn't believe how many! I lost track after, like, a thousand. I don't know."

What was she talking about...?

"But, I just couldn't find one where we were... together. Not like this."

I kept looking at her. She could tell I wasn't getting it.

Alyssa lifted up her hair in back and let her bangs fall forward. Then made a sour face.

"Maybe more like this?"

She was... more familiar... but I just couldn't place her.

"I'm Claudette! My hair was darker and shorter. I was in your 8th period Non-combinatory Relationships class? From before."


"Without the pyramids, silly!"

Pyramids in the Sky
8/24/2021 11:22pm

I was getting a kind of tunnel vision. And vertigo. Because Alyssa was freaking me out.

"You... you know the floating sky pyramids didn't used to be here?"

"Of course I know! It was the only way we could be together!"

Alyssa looked at me sweetly, and ran her finger over my hand. There was a strawberry milkshake between us.

"I... I really don't understand. You said... Claudette? I'm really sorry, I just don't..."

"Oh no no. Don't worry about it. There was no way you could remember me from that class. Totally 'star-crossed,' or whatever. That was the whole problem. There was no way in that universe would could ever connect. Which is why I started making new ones."

"New ones?"

"Yeah. I started small, like just moving our seats closer together. And when that didn't work I thought I was the problem, so started giving myself different parents and stuff. But then I realized it was bigger than that. Changing everything."


"Well, but not you. You were the one thing I didn't want to change. And that made it super hard. Like, there's no Kennedy assassination. Or no Pearl Harbor and America doesn't enter WWII. Or the Roman Empire never fell. Or farming and domesticated animals never took off. But that changed things WAY too much. Like there would be no Psyhigh. Or at least not the one we went to."

I was starting to get the picture.

"So then I figured out how to make weirder changes. Stuff that changed everything in a big way but didn't change the basics. Like the alien overlords in 1966. Well ok that one ended up pretty rough. And the asteroid in 1750. I had kind of a catastrophe kick there for awhile. That was in my frustrated phase."


"Yeah. I mean, in subjective time, it's taken me, I dunno, centuries. Enough to drive a girl totally nuts! If you know what I mean."

Alyssa winked at me slowly.

"On a lark," she continued, "somehow I came up with this pyramid thing, and what do you know it WORKED! And here we are! Finally."

She gave my hand a big squeeze with both of hers.

"So," she said, fluttering her eyes, "Do you want to, I dunno... go out?"

Pyramids in the Sky
8/31/2021 12:15am

And so we dated for a while.

School was easy, my family was easy... everything felt like it was going my way. And I couldn't help but wonder if that was all part of the changes Alyssa had made too. She said I was the one thing she didn't want to change, but if she could change literally everything else about reality, why not?

We went to movies, ate french fries and milkshakes at the Brain Freeze, hung out and watched anime.

And we made out. A LOT. I mean, she'd spent subjective centuries fiddling with reality to create this very time together, so I guess she had a lot pent up. It's all she'd been thinking about. And it was pretty great.

But after a couple of months, I could tell there was something... missing. And I could tell she felt it too.

"Meet you at your house after school?" I asked. Her parents didn't get home till at least 5:30.

"Oh, uh, not tonight. I have to do a bunch of stuff, and there's a church thing tonight."

"Sure. See you tomorrow!"

Everything else started to slow down too. I mean, there couldn't be somebody else, right?

Then, on campus after school one day, we had the talk.

"Eris, I have to tell you something. There's somebody else."

I was confused.

"It's someone I never noticed before. In any of the other worlds. And, I dunno, I'm just really drawn to them. What if finding THEM was the real reason I went through all this?"

I guess I wasn't exactly heartbroken, because you have to admit the whole thing had been kind of weird. But I had gotten to like her, and feel comfortable around her. She was funny, and cute, and pretty bad ass when you thought about everything she could do. Everything she had done just to get me.

"But you, you're GREAT. Really. A real sport. No regrets at all." she said. She gave me a kiss on the cheek and turned to leave.

"Wait!" I said. "Wait, just wait. So, it's over? Just like that?"

"I'm sorry Eris, but I can't just change my feelings."

"But, but... the pyramids. This isn't... my world. Are you going to change things back? Or put me back where I was before?"

Alyssa kept walking away, faster now, but hollered back "Oh yeah! No problem! Don't worry! I'll take care of everything!!! See you!!!" and she blew a kiss.

The next day Alyssa wasn't in school. I figured we were still on good terms as exes, so I went by her house.

Her house was empty. They had moved. Or something. A For Sale sign in the yard, and some plastic sacks and tumbleweeds blowing by in the breeze. Just like that she was gone.

But I'm still here.

With nothing but the pyramids in the sky to remember her by.

And no way back.

Anybody else want to change my world?