Copyright 2015 Richards Hall and e.
Published by Richards Hall and e. at Shakespir
The SUN is Fallen
<-- GO -->
It was a balmy 4 degrees out, with a light wind, and still Danny Brinbort stopped for two dollars worth of gas. Ten purchases on ten separate days meant 7 free cups of coffee. Balmy it was surely not, but, as they say, it was a dry cold. Maybe they seriously didn’t say that, but it was, nonetheless, true. In Danny’s mind a dry 4 degrees beat the suck out of a moist 32 degrees with 8 inches of slushy snow, as was in the forecast. One might count that 4 degrees as a blessing, if one were scavenging for blessings, and Danny was not. Although the free coffee deal may suggest otherwise.
“Must he do this?” asked Danny of his wife Audrey when he arrived home and saw the sign.
“I for one am proud of him. Prouder than the dickens.”
Proud of young Wayne that was, their younger one. He had just posted a sign in the front yard: Birnbort Snow Removal.
“You know, Wayne,” said Danny a little later, and it is always a little later, “you shovel enough snow and you’ll be shoveling ghost snow in your sleep.”
That gave Wayne pause, and just after he finally had decided on a fair rate to charge. Now what?
Now what, their neighbor Turk Roerhcsrepmak was at the front door with a batch of potato, bacon and cheese perogies that the wife made as Christmas gifts. “Who’s doin’ what to the snow?” he asked. He was old country.
“That is Wayne’s snowstorm,” said Danny.
“I’m doing it all to the snow,” said Wayne.
“All what kind of snow?” asked Norbert, teasing. “There’s a big snow in the forecast for tonight.”
“They haven’t built snow big enough to stop me,” said Wayne. “Do you want me to pencil you in?”
“If you’re sure you can shovel me out.” Turk had considered that the sign might refer to plowing, although he was pretty darned sure Danny wasn’t going to start plowing snow any time soon. They liked to say Wayne was wiry when someone called him small, begging the question of whether he was he sturdy enough to handle a snow falling out of time.
Hjalmar was asleep. He felt like he accumulated sleep all day long until it knocked him over and out and held him down until it faded away until all gone and he could get up. He did not like phone calls in the middle of the night. He could barely lift an arm to get at the phone.
“What?” he asked, having not opened his eyes to see who the caller was.
“Hey, it’s me,” he said.
“Me? Not!” said Hjalmar, thinking of ringing off.
“Me! Danny!” said Danny, the he. The other he. One of them. “I need you to come over here.”
“You know that’s not going to happen.” Long story for as short as it. Strap in.
“When does it start snowing?” asked Danny.
“It’s the middle of the night,” Hjalmar complained. “Isn’t it? What time is it anyway? Don’t tell me,” he quickly added. “Don’t wake me up with those kinds of questions. Ever.”
“I know you don’t like weird, but this is your kind of weird.”
That kind of weird talk coming from the king of weird had to give Hjalmar pause, even half asleep. Further or double pause as the king of weird had already paused his sleep.
“It looks like it was starting to snow and stopped,” said Danny. Now that’s something you don’t see everyday. “It’s just hanging in the air. Nothing is on the ground except grass and stuff.”
This sort of thing being Hjalmar’s weird meant he could confirm Danny’s assessment. “Okay, I’ll be over some day,” said Hjalmar, and hung up.
“Thank you,” said Danny, not sure where or when, no matter how you looked at it.
As a free agent of the hyper-Whirled, Danny was truly lucky to have a divining rod such as Hjalmar close at hand. Perhaps it was by design. It may or may not bee a discomforting notion. To a bee, that is. A water bee. Is it?
Agents and agencies, free and otherwise, serving with or against entropy, or whatever – interesting stuff, but not now, no time to hash it out.
Hjalmar found it in his heart to head over to Danny’s presently, dodging snowflakes as he made his way, and not all that hard to do under the circumstances. “What did you do to the snow?” he asked, right off.
“I did nothing,” said Danny.
“It’s that thing you do, isn’t it?” asked Hjalmar.
“I did nothing,” Danny repeated.
“Right!” said Hjalmar. “Exactly. Stop it.”
“Shut up,” said Danny.
“I need to sit down,” said Hjalmar, feeling and looking woozy. Danny saw it, and lead him to a chair.
This wasn’t a sleep or dodging snow woozy, this was woozy of transition, that which happened when Hjalmar left Richards Hall, his place of residence. He was out in the real Whirled, out of the Iffen counter, and his mind was kicking in and kicking out the orderized past.
An Iffen counter was much like an infinity chamber, except it exactly wasn’t. More to the point, an infinity chamber was much like an Iffen counter, which had been around a long, long time before Hermann Strumm dreamed up his ideas.
As Hjalmar rested and processed, he wondered if he still was taking place back at Richards Hall, maybe on hold for a time as it were, waiting for him to return from this encounter with the real, outer Whirled to update himself. He would have a better idea about it once he got back to himself, he always did.
“Are you feeling better yet?” asked Danny.
“What’s this about?” asked Hjalmar. “Yes, snow is hanging in the air.”
Where Hjalmar had an Iffen counter that he stepped into, it seemed Danny had an Iffen counter within him. There had been a mishap. As such, he could de-synchronize and appear to see stopped time, or time not happening. “I think we’re having a vision,” he said.
“Who’s we?” asked Hjalmar. “You got me up and out of bed and over here for that?”
Danny looked at him curiously. “You have a problem with that?”
Hjalmar paused to reason it out, and he had a lot of stopped time to do it. “No,” he finally said, a little dejected. “What’s the vision?”
“The snow, moron. The EARTH not synchronizing with the atmosphere. With weather.”
“You have a problem with that?” he asked, dejected, but calmed.
“Of course I have a fucking problem with that.”
“Don’t start hurling,” said Hjalmar, calmly. He had a sense of calm that he liked to apply when Danny was distressed. He wasn’t being nice, he was getting even because he knew it irked the hell out of his adopted brother. It was one of his few recourses he had to apply his mark on him. Hjalmar thought some more. “So you’re saying weather and stuff is not part of the EARTH proper?”
“I am saying that,” said Danny, puzzling over such a question coming out of Hjalmar.
“What about when the snow is on it? What about then? It’s sort of like frosting on a cake.” Frosting, how more exact can you get? “It could be a triton deal,” he suddenly reasoned.
“That’s what I just said.”
“I think you said, ‘Triton.’
“There’s a big difference.” In a way, at times, Hjalmar was brighter away from Richards Hall than he was in it, he was just more reliable and consistent in the Hall. Or the Iffen counter if you prefer, where he existed as both himself and as himself in reverse. Memory may or may not breathe, or it may or may not breathe with you, but an Iffen counter was a thing of memory that breathed on it’s own, and serviced a triton, or two, or however many, while a Hjalmar serviced it, an Iffen counter that is, and usually was once it got to counting.
The iffy thing was, would that memory live on beyond Hjalmar, and in what sort of state. As perhaps an artificial agency of Hjalmar? Or as his disembodied intelligence, were that the word, intelligence, not one of the four preceding it. Would happiness or sadness still be available? Is a body of flesh a pre-requisite to happy or sad? Is jettisoning that body the whole idea? Did a heavenly body, such as a star or planet have heavenly consciousness, and was an Iffen counter on that path?
In case of emergency, break out the x-cell phone. “You’re hopeless,” said Danny.
“The fuck I am,” said Hjalmar. “What’s eating you now. I guarantee you are being notion-ed by Triton or a triton. Something is up.” Way up, and at the moment not coming down.
Although Hjalmar always seemed in a state of half befuddlement, which hardly seemed do-able, over the max it would seem, Danny could reach out and bring on the full befuddle. He spoke into the phone. “Hey, it’s me.”
“Who are you talking to?” asked Hjalmar, just knowing something was off, as if a voice was telling him so.
“You,” said Danny, to Hjalmar.
Hjalmar grabbed the phone away with enforcement and asked, “Who is this?”
“I think you know. Give the phone back.”
“Does snow hanging in the air sound like a triton deal to you?” Danny asked into the phone. He pouted and disconnected.
“Where the hell do we begin to dis-en-what-the-fuck this whole situation?” asked Hjalmar.
Now it was Danny’s turn to be calm. “This will all catch up to you when you get back home. Just because it isn’t really happening doesn’t mean you won’t remember it.”
Hjalmar growled. It’s what he did. It’s about all he could do at the moment, or not.
On paper, Danny could work it out to his satisfaction, if just for the byproduct of peace of mind. The issues to factor? A self-centric spazz or spasm of human organisms in conflict with each other and at the same time in conflict with a self-centric EARTH organ, all together in conflict with a self-centric star system where the SUN was the star, and was a little smug about it. Where people had an issue with their own entropy while matching wits with EARTH grade entropy, it also seemed the EARTH had an issue with SUN grade entropy, and on bad days the EARTH just wanted to flee her orbit and might throw a tantrum, might hold her breath a while.
-- > STOP < --