The Omnicosmic Odyssey of Sonicus Maximus
Part One, Chapter One, Act One
SCENE ONE - Contact
CHOOSE MODE: You will direct the story by making a choice based on what you believe the narrator would have decided.
I was not sure what time it was when I pulled into the bar's parking lot. I knew I was late...and every second I spent checking the time was another second I might not be moving forward at the highest speed my body could produce. And every wasted second was one that would not return to me.
After all, that was the entire point of my being here, was it not? Time was slipping away from me. Once the number of my years exceeded 45, I began saying "I have more yesterdays than tomorrows."
With that perspective, it was time to say goodbye to one "mid-life crisis" and start another one.
Moving so swiftly, I was fortunate not to have knocked anyone over getting inside the building. A wave of extreme irritation pulsed through me as I berated myself for not getting here sooner. I became even more internally irascible as I asked myself what I could have done differently to make it happen. After all, I could not have left the arena any sooner, driven any faster, or made this meeting place any closer.
All I was accomplishing with my angst was to reduce my focus and diminish my composure. The stress only made my appearance worse than it already was. My deteriorating face paint was beginning to get into my eyes. But it pleased me when I realized I would not miss dealing with that.
It did not especially help that people were staring at me. I almost wished I was wearing a shirt that could express how clearly I understood why they were giving me these looks, something like "Yes, I realize that have green paint in my hair. I am aware of the face paint that has gone from merely running to actually crumbling now, leaving my face as though it had turned around, seen my skin, and was jumping to the floor to get away. I know that I am wearing a dress shirt with a tie...and matching dress slacks which are just low enough to reveal the top of a pair of neon green wrestling trunks, complete with the strings sticking up and out, over the belt. And I can obviously feel that I am wearing wrestling boots instead of shoes. Yes, the boots are as uncomfortable as they look after they have been worn for a while."
The patrons here had to know I was deliberately dressed in this supervillian wrestling manager outfit. Were their eyes not connected to brains questioning why that was the case? Maybe they thought I had gotten lost on my way back from the matches. It might have broken some brains to learn that this bar was actually my destination after leaving the show.
By now the crowd had become all but invisible to me. I was looking around for the woman who chose this as our meeting place. Ideally, I would have had more time to gather my thoughts and pray without the distraction of driving before meeting her, but that was not to be. I was as composed as I was going to get, and once I located her, I was simply going to have to sit down and make my "pitch" with the best efficacy I could muster in the moment.
She knew what I looked like and how I would be dressed, so she would not be surprised by my appearance. However, I had far less certainty regarding hers. All I really had from her was a picture of her in her military uniform. The picture was not of the highest clarity and might not have been recently taken. I had not seen the pictured military uniform anywhere else before, so if she was wearing it tonight, that would help distinguish her. Although she did not explicitly say she would wear the uniform in the photograph, I was expecting her to have an evident military appearance, since I understood that her interviewing me was in the course of official business for her.
My eyes had scanned the entirety of the visible area, and I saw no one wearing anything resembling a military uniform. I was starting to panic a little now. Though my mind racing at overclocked speed made certainty difficult, I estimated that I had now been inside the bar for upwards of ten minutes. I had surely been here long enough to get increasingly nervous that I might have been stood up.
The irritation I felt earlier over being late and the annoyance from being stared at were both now wholly replaced with that sickening feeling that comes from an expectation of a rendezvous with someone who does not appear. Memories of that experience from my past life, personal and professional, began to gather in my mind like water pushing against a dam not engineered to withstand that much pressure.
But then, I noticed someone waving from the corner of the room. There may have been someone blocking my view, who had now moved. I did not remember seeing this person waving when I scanned the room previously.
Despite the short hair, I could tell she was a woman. If her outfit was a uniform, it was unlike any I had ever seen worn, by any member of any branch of America's armed forces.
This became exceedingly awkward. There was no one else trying to get my attention. But was she?
"If I even begin to walk over there, and she isn't waving at me, I'm going to lose it," was my immediate thought. But I needed to do something other than stand where I was, given how many times I had heard patrons say "excuse me" as they went around me.
I moved in her direction. At first I stepped slowly, allowing for all the possible alternatives if she was not waving at me. I could visualize them: Three of her girlfriends coming up to her, hugging her and screaming. A boyfriend embracing and kissing her. At the very least, a blind date or a coworker approaching the table.
None of those things came to pass.
I was now moving steadily toward her. She was waving her arm more rapidly.
The wave changed to a motion, beckoning me toward her, with her eyes firmly meeting mine across the distance.
We had made contact.
(Not what actually happened.)
Before I went inside, I came to my senses and asked myself what I thought I was doing. The Indie Game Advisor on Twitter was right. Although making video games was perhaps the last big unattempted dream of my youth, I knew I would fail no matter how hard I tried.
Wrestling had been my dream too. And I had now done it twice and failed both times.
Was I going to do that with video games also? I had already released a game that I literally could not give away. This promotional trip to the Amazon to promote PlayerPla.Net was not going to make any difference.
It was time to stop doing this stuff, and just try to live the most normal life I could, as oxymoronic as that notion might be for me.
After sitting in the car for a few more moments, I cranked the stereo and pulled of out my parking place.
Because of the music, I did not hear the car that hit me. I doubt it would have mattered, considering how fast it was barreling through the parking lot.
Depending on how you define "car wreck" I suppose I had survived about ten of them in my life. The impact was no worse than getting broadsided when I crossed the highway in Pikeville that time.
What WAS different were the smells. I have always loved the smell of gasoline, so it did not bother me. It was the burning smell. Though I had survived collisions from every angle, and being upside down in a creek, I had not come out of a car on fire.
Realizing that I would not get out of this one was my final thought before the explosion sent me on to eternity.>