☦Allan reads a dusty old tabloid.☦
The Last Era: 12, August, 2119 AD
Sylvan Grove, Kansas, USA
The organizations that were responsible for dealing with the monsters came into public view a long time ago. Back then, people were scared. There were decades of confusion and anger, with riots all throughout the world.
Then the First Occult war began, which was spurred on by the Phantoms, or Shadow People. The United States and Canada were ravaged. Every other threshold in the northwest became a highway for the creatures. Everyone knew someone who had their heart harvested.
Two years into the war, the Barclay document, which outlined how to destroy the creatures, was made public. People armed themselves with knowledge, and the war was finally won by the newly formed (and soon deformed) Canadian-American militia.
It was decided that the every person must be educated, and trained from birth to resist their fears. In a few generations, the common man wasn't so afraid. He didn't respond to the bogeyman with fear. When something bumped in the dark, he bumped back.
A culture grew around destroying monsters, and being courageous in the face of the approaching unknowns and inevitability. That is why Allen, the young man from the farmhouse in nowhere, Kansas, was holding a bloodstained Louisville Slugger, and chasing a large, naked dog-thing down a dusty back road.
"Hey! Why are you running? Kill me!" yelled Allen breathlessly.
The dog-thing, which was colloquially referred to as a Bad Dog, galloped off the dusty road and into the woods, leaving a trail of green blood behind it.
Allen laughed a silent laugh, and smiled.
He shook his head and began walking further down the road, deciding not to pursue it any further. He was on his way to the city, which was about 15 miles away. He planned on finding some booze, an antenna, and a small laptop computer so that he could entertain himself on those noisy nights when he was stuck in the house.
He would also need to find a PSF signal filter so that the hostile, brain scrambling parts of the internet were filtered out, and things couldn't travel through his screen on the wireless signal.
He traveled listening to music on his PDA for five miles, passing old, rotting ranch houses. He knew he was near the highway when he neared the red house with the family of skeletons on the porch. He waved to the tallest one, and the skeleton nodded.
A bit of ways down the highway, he grew bored with the songs, so he pulled a PSF care package that he had found earlier out of his backpack. It was one of about twenty littering the pavement back by the gas station. They sent drones twice yearly and carpet bombed known urban centers with reading material. He didn't really see the point of this, because they still had WiFi balloons floating around.
Maybe it was for old people who couldn't make their way to the city? Posterity? Oh well.
CLEF'S GUIDE FOR DEALING WITH BRAIN FIDDLERS.
Shucks. He wouldn't ever have to deal with warpers. He was in the middle of Kansas. Warpers liked to hang out in big cities and wastelands.
He skimmed the pages just to be sure.
KILL IT. JUST KILL IT. DON'T TALK TO IT. DON'T LET IT SEE YOU. KILL IT. IT'S NOT YOUR FRIEND. TOO LATE YOU'RE DEAD.
The text was repeated across forty pages.
He pulled out another.
THE BRIGHT GUIDE TO STAYING ALIVE FOR LONGER THAN YOU SHOULD
This one was just recounting of the safety tips he saw on the PSF band, with a little commentary here and there. There were also some jokes he already heard before. These things were at least thirty years old. Half the people who wrote them were dead, and he didn't understand how the people that were still writing them were still breathing. He threw them to the side.
THE INQUIRER 2118
Okay. He had never seen this one before. He opened up the seal and tore into it.
CONTAINMENT SITES FOR K CLASS OBJECTS: STILL OPERATIONAL IN THE MIDWEST?
WHAT'S GOING ON IN THE REST OF THE WORLD? YOU TELL US.
DR.MANN, FAMOUS RESEARCHER, GONE INSANE, AND INTO HIDING. READ THE EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH SPECIAL AGENT YORIC.
THE CHAOS INSURGENCY
He stretched, and looked off into the horizon. It was almost noon. He should be walking a little faster.
TEN MILLION HANDS: THE SECOND OCCULT WAR, THE MASS BROADCAST OF THE FORTUNE TELLER, RECOLLECTIONS OF THE A.W.C.Y. MASSACRE. THE DAY GRAMMY SAW THE WORLD.
EUCLID FLORIDA. LARGEST CONTAINMENT AREA IN THE USA IS SET TO BURST
NEW YORK: THE LIVING CITY
THE GREAT WITCH OF THE NORTH
NUCLEAR STRIKES, DIMENSIONAL TEARS, NECROMANCERS, OH MY.
NO HOPE FOR THE FUTURE.
WE OWN YOU.
GO WATCH TV.
YOU'RE ON TV.
He should really know better by now.
WE OWN EVERYTHING.
HOW WE KILLED YOUR GRANDMOTHER: THE WHOLE THING: ALL OF THE JUICY BITS.
He winced as he saw and smelled, on the last page, the sensational, graphic images of himself lying dead in a pool of blood and feces.
LAY DOWN AND DIE
The last, unread headline fired loud, from a voice he did not know, ringing throughout his skull.
He threw the magazine away from him.
"Gah! Enough of this smut."
He shook his head and tried to remove the thoughts from it. He tightened his brown vest and began to march.
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