Thursday, December 15, 2016

Character Intro & Setting





Stanley opened the file cabinet and thumbed through the contents to find the right spot to slide the folder into place. With it he closes his briefcase. It was this thing about his job that brought him satisfaction, putting things where they belonged.

Stanley is a short bespectacled man with thinning hair. He wears a crisp white button up shirt and a bow tie. The bow tie is not an affectation or a sign of character, it was just that a dangling tie could get caught up in a drawer or one of the machines he was in charge of when necessary. Stanley wouldn't hear of going without a tie at all, though; shudder the thought.

In fact not only is Stanley of the most white-bread, vanilla personage, he utterly lacks ambition and imagination. If he were the King of the Vikings, they'd never have invaded the English isles or discovered Nova Scotia. He is made of such stuff that abusing his power, even to retain the throne, would be unthinkable.

This made Stanley the perfect figure to keep order in the Universal Exchange that links and keeps track of pretty much everything that happens everywhere, all the time. A person with imagination or ambition would use such a position to, perish the thought, change things. Play God or at least play favorites and enrich themselves.

The filing cabinet was just one of trillions that Stanley is responsible for. Also he has been responsible for them for as long as he could remember. Not that it mattered. It could have been decades or centuries or epochs, but time didn't exist in this place as it did elsewhere.

A distant alarm sounded, sort of like the bugle of war but very far away. Stanley checks the readings on his holographic wrist computer.

“Oh wow, this is out of place!” Stanley utters to himself. Things being “out of place” is one of the worst possible things in his mind, the other was being “out of time”. Space and time are like longitude and latitude on a planet, they are like coordinates for the universe.

Quickly Stanley moves toward his waiting conveyance, which resembles a 1929 Ford Roadster convertible with the top down. “Sagittarius Majoris,” he intones to the vehicle, “2123832-1232”. This completes the coordinates and the vehicle takes off toward that sector. Although the vehicle was moving fast enough that everything else became a blur, it still took a good minute to reach the desired place and time index.

Stanley exits the vehicle and runs up the path between two tall rows of filing cabinets and assorted other things, as he turns a corner he spots the disturbance. Meanwhile the details of the incident appear within his briefcase, but Stanley paused long enough to take in the sight.

The creature was nine feet tall, humanoid, except that it's head was six heads all meeting at the center where they shared a mouth. Six noses and twelve eyes and six bushy heads of hair that sort of gave the impression of some bad artistic impression of a flower. This was a Sagitarian. A very confused and lost Sagitarian who was in a mild state of shock, unfortunately he wasn't the only one.

Stanley walked purposefully toward the creature and waving the file he had retrieved from his briefcase. “It says here that some sort of anomaly whisked you away from Sagittarius Majoris and deposited you into the closet of one Maylilin Disli of the planet they call Aslastia. The poor child was frightened out of her wits and nearly fell into a coma by getting a glimpse of you.”

The large Sagitarian responded, but it was short.

“Yes, yes, you've never seen a three-eyed being before and it's not your fault that you were there. The problem is that the anomaly must be hanging around your planet, possibly in some kind of orbit. It must be studied and rendered pacified,” Stanley tried to explain.

Obviously Sagitarians won't do it, being beastly and stupid. You would think they'd be more intelligent with six brains. All that wasted potential just waiting for evolution.


The creature responded again.

“About that, yes come with me. I'll get you back home to your...” Stanley checks the file, walking back toward the vehicle with a confused creature following him, “Two wives and seven children. I can't believe you can afford to support them on your waste retrieval salary.”

The creature responded.

“Oh, I see, you make them work and support you.”

The creature climbed into the passenger seat of the Roadster as Stanley got in on the opposite side.

“I'll have you back in your time and place in no time,” he assured the Sagitarian who was starting to become more animated as the shock of his circumstances wore off. They arrived at a large column-like fixture with a large transparent door.

“Just step through the door and you'll be home.”

The Sagitarian walked around the column and sniffed the doorway suspiciously.

Stanley checked the readings on his holographic wrist computer, “It's perfectly safe, I've used it often enough to send wayward beings back to where and when they belonged. All you need to do is step inside and you will be home again.”

Twelve eyes became suspicious slits for a moment but the creature sighed through its mouth and stepped inside and made a noise. The door slid shut again. The Sagitarian decided to panic, all twelve eyes wide open as it pounded on the door whining loudly.

“Well, no, I didn't say it was painless. It's not completely painless,” Stanley explained as he hit the ENACT key and began walking back to the vehicle without even looking back and the creature was sucked upward with the sound of a pneumatic tube before a bright light erupted for a second and his atoms were separated and then compressed before being shoved through a singularity set toward his appointed time and place.

The Sagitarian had been properly filed back to his own time and place, where he belonged.

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