{(set: $conscience to 0) (set: $intelligence to 0) (set: $punctuality to 0) (set: $curiousity to 0) (set: $pride to 0) (set: $letterRead to false) (set: $havePsychOffer to false) (set: $madbusiness to 0) (set: $madanimal to 0) (set: $madmaudlin to 0) (set: $donePsych to false) (set: $doneWarehouse to false) (set: $doneInternet to false) (set: $madnessOrder to (array:)) (set: $topmadness to 0) } =><= ###A Series Of Totally Legit Events ####A Ludum Dare Descent Into Madness by Matthew Chatwin <== As you run from the angry mob, you can hear the screaming. You can't make out what they're saying... you're concerning yourself more with the sound of the flaming torches. Where did they get those, anyway? What is this, Victorian England? [[Maybe you should back up a bit...->Backed Up Too Far]]Oh, okay. This is the story of you. Now, where do I start? Well, you see, when a mummy and a daddy love each other very much... [[Maybe don't back up that much->Introduction]]Being poor sucks. You already suspected as much, but now that you've started university, that fact has really started to hit home. As have the bills, which is sort of the problem. Anyone who says that unemployed people just aren't looking hard enough for a job clearly hasn't tried to find a job lately. How did you lose that fast food job, anyway? (link: "I couldn't in good conscience keep selling fried junk to people when obesity is becoming such a problem.")[(set: $conscience to 1)(goto: "Lost job")] (link: "No time, man. Classes, assignments, Netflix binges, all of that. Just not enough hours in the day.")[(goto: "Lost job")] (link: "I got sick of a 25 year old with pimples bossing me around. So I told him to shove it.")[(set: $conscience to -1)(goto: "Lost job")] <!--[[Lost job]]-->Good thing your roommate has rich parents. And that he doesn't seem to notice when things go "missing" from the fridge. You'd still prefer not to rely on this method forever though. It doesn't help that his love of chilli doesn't exactly agree with your stomach... or your bowel. [[I don't need a detailed description, thanks.->Lost job, p2]]You're not hungry right now though. As you contemplate this, you hear a sound coming from the door. You look through the peephole, but you can't see anyone. Well, you can see the shoes of someone sprinting down the hall away from your room, but that doesn't really count... and they're gone now anyway. As you turn away, you hear something below you. Your left foot seems to have found itself sitting on top of an envelope. Your anonymous friend (who's probably left the building by now) must have slid it under the door. You pick it up and look it over. It's a plain white envelope with your name on it... there isn't much more to say about it. Just as you start to open it, you hear an alarm go off on your phone. If you don't leave now, you'll be late for class! (link: "Leave for class")[(set: $punctuality to $punctuality + 1)(set: $curiousity to $curiousity - 1)(goto: "Off to class, on time")]<!--[[Off to class, on time]]--> (link: "Who cares about class, what's in the envelope?")[(set: $punctuality to $punctuality - 1)(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1)(goto: "Open envelope early")]<!--[[Open envelope early]]-->You head off for class. Some mystery letter - which is probably a prank - can wait. On your way you see a girl holding a stack of papers, trying to get peoples' attention. She's not having much luck. As it just so happens, your path to the classroom goes right past her. You're sort of on a tight schedule though, you might be late if you listen to what she has to say. [[She looks like she needs a win, listen to her.->Listen to the girl]] [[I don't really have time for this.->Arrive at class, early]]You open the envelope. How could you not? It has to to be something good. You pull out a single sheet of paper. It reads: --- (display: "The letter")<!--[[The letter]]--> --- [[That's cool, but I really need to get to class!->Going to class late]] [[Pffft. Someone's idea of a joke. I should get to class now though..->Going to class late]]//Dear student,// We understand your predicament. Not everyone has the luxury of being able to live off a trust fund, or having more credit cards than they do fingers. And we think it's great when people want to live within their means, even when your means ''suck''. And that's why we'd like to make you an offer. Unfortunately this is a discreet matter which we'd prefer not to discuss in this letter, in case this letter falls into the wrong hands. This might sound like some top secret spy stuff you wouldn't think exists outside the movies. Don't worry, this letter won't self destruct. Unless you put it in a fire. But we'd prefer you don't show it to anyone else. If you're interested in our offer, go to the building on the corner of Seventh Street and Rose Street in the industrial district behind the campus at 8:30 tonight. Knock on the front door, and when the person inside asks a riddle, explain that riddles are stupid and they'll let you in. We hope to see you tonight. If you don't want to take us up on our offer, then just throw this in the trash and pretend you never read it. And please don't tell anyone about this. It would break our little hearts. Yours sincerely, Some friends. (set: $letterRead to true)You rush across the quad. The professor always makes fun of whoever gets to class last, and it's been you far too often. You spot a girl in the middle of the path far too late. She's dressed like a student, holding a stack of papers, and, unfortunately, facing the other way, talking to someone. Unfortunately for you, you're going a bit too fast to stop. Or get out of the way. Or tell her to get out of the way. Or do anything, really. Collision in 3... 2... 1... [Crash!]<collision1| [Bang!]<collision2| [Smack!]<collision3| (click: ?collision1)[(replace: ?collision2)[](replace: ?collision3)[](display: "Going to class late, p2")] (click: ?collision2)[(replace: ?collision1)[](replace: ?collision3)[](display: "Going to class late, p2")] (click: ?collision3)[(replace: ?collision1)[](replace: ?collision2)[](display: "Going to class late, p2")] <!--[[Going to class late, p2]]-->Papers go flying everywhere. You and her both go down. It probably looked pretty impressive. You secretly hope someone was filming it (you'll check YouTube later). For now though, you just feel a bit hurt. Both physically, and your pride (and what does it say about you that you're not sure which is the greater injury?). Getting up, you mumble a quick apology. She's still on the ground though, and her stuff is everywhere. You could help her, but you're already pretty late for class. [[Help her, it's the right thing to do.->Help the girl]] [[You don't want to be late, better head to class->Don't help the girl]]{(set: $conscience to $conscience + 1) (set: $punctuality to $punctuality - 1) }"I'm really sorry about that" you say as you offer your hand to help her get up. "You should be!" she snaps, as she rebuffs your offer of help and picks herself up off the ground. She seems a bit angry. You back away slightly, just in case she wants to use more than words. She seems to notice this, and looks away from you for a second. You see her blink, and her face softens. Looking back at you, she seems to have changed completely. "Sorry," she says <span class="font75">(you don't think she's the one who needs to apologise, but after you just knocked her over you figure you shouldn't be interrupting her),</span> "guess I, um, was in the way a bit". She even seems a bit timid now! You're not sure what to make of her. As you're helping her pick up her things (it takes a little while because she has what seems like a million bits of paper) she seems to start from a prepared speech. "So, um, I'm a psychology student, and, um," <span class="font75">(she seems to say "um" a lot, at least when she's not angry)</span> "I was wondering if you'd, um, help be in an experiment I'm doing for an, um, assignment". As she says that, she hands you a piece of paper. "All you have to do is, um, show up, and it won't hurt or anything, I promise!" she says. You think you even see her crack a bit of a smile as she finishes. By the time she finished that, you've finished helping her pick up all her things, and have started off towards class again (still rushing). You look over your shoulder and call back to her "I'll think about it!". As you turn your head back to look where you're going, you narrowly avoid running into a pole. Will you ever learn? (set: $havePsychOffer to true) [[Off to class!->Arrive at class, very late]]{(set: $conscience to $conscience - 1) }You don't have time for this. You'll be in trouble if you're really late again. As you rush away, you turn back to look at her quickly. She's still on the ground, and other people are going over to her to help her. It's her fault though, right? She was the one in the way. You just have to get to class. [[Yeah, and if I don't keep going, I'll never get there->Arrive at class, slightly late]] As you open the door to the classroom, you quickly take a peek and see a room full of eyes, staring at you. You try to look away from them, but you can ''//feel//'' the shame. Worse, looking away from the students has given you no choice but to look at the teacher, who uses this opportunity to make a scene of your arrival. "So glad you could join us!" he bellows, "I presume you have a copy of the new timetable for everyone? They didn't even send me a copy for some reason! I've been standing here teaching for half an hour when apparently I wasn't supposed to be!" If there was one time you could have the ability to turn invisible, this would be a great one. Or being able to burn stuff with your eyes. That's cool too, and you could make yourself a nice exit for a quick escape. (set: $pride to $pride - 1) You can't do either of those things though, so you quietly slink into a desk at the front of the room. The lesson has already started, and it doesn't look like anyone will share their notes, so you're already behind. Great. {(set: $intelligence to $intelligence - 1) (set: $classTime to "late") (display: "Long, boring class")<!--[[Long, boring class]]-->}{(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1) (set: $conscience to $conscience + 1) (set: $punctuality to $punctuality - 1) }As you get close to where she's trying to talk to people, she doesn't notice you, so you call out to her - "Hey there! Looking for someone who'll actually talk to you?". She looks in your direction, and changes her expression - she looks visibly relieved. Walking towards you, she begins what seems like a pre-prepared speech: "Hi there", she sounds a bit nervous, but considering how many people don't even want to talk to her, you can't really blame her. She continues: "I'm a psychology student and I'm looking for volunteers for a little experiment for a paper I have to do". Sensing your concern for your own wellbeing, she softens her expression a bit and continues: "Don't worry, it's not going to hurt or anything. And there'll be free food!" How could you resist an offer like that? [["Sounds like fun. When is it?" you ask->Accept the girl's offer]] [["Sorry, I'm way too busy." you reply, even though you'd really like to help her->Reject the girl's offer]]Opening the door to the classroom, you find it mostly empty. You're not really that early, but everyone else is usually late. If you weren't such a teacher's pet, you might think it was a bad thing to be here before everyone else, but since you are, being on time is cool! (set: $pride to $pride + 1) As usual, the teacher shows up exactly on time and starts teaching, despite the fact that most of the class isn't there yet. Their loss, you figure. Although you never could understand why people paid to be here and then didn't show up to class. {(set: $intelligence to $intelligence + 1)(set: $classTime to "early") (display: "Long, boring class")<!--[[Long, boring class]]-->}Her face lights up. "Thanks!" she says, handing you a piece of paper. "All the information you'll need is on that sheet. See you there!" You put the sheet into your backpack and keep heading to class. That didn't take too long. And you made someone's day in the process. It's win-win! { (set: $havePsychOffer to true)} [[Better get to class now, though->Arrive at class, slightly late]]"Oh." she says, suddenly looking towards the ground. "Thanks anyway." "I'm really sorry" you say, trying to make things better, "see you around". You really hope you do, she seems nice. But you really do have to get to class. [[Well than what are we waiting for?->Arrive at class, slightly late]] Maybe you had to work up a bit of a sweat, but you made it to class. You're only five minutes late, too, which is good, because it's when everyone else shows up anyway, so people probably won't even notice you're late (just hope they don't get a chance to smell you). {(set: $classTime to "time") (display: "Long, boring class")<!--[[Long, boring class]]-->}Your (if: $classTime is "early")[obvious](elseif: $classTime is "late")[//obvious//] enthusiasm for being here doesn't do anything to change the fact that it's a long class. After two hours, you need a break. After three hours, you'd kill to get out of there. After four hours, the bit about three hours isn't really a joke any more. Eventually, it's over. Your brain is fried. You're not sure you'll remember much of it a week from now. You're not even sure you'll remember any of it five minutes from now. But that isn't important right now. What is important is what you're going to do now. You could always go back to your room and do nothing in particular, if you can't think of anything else to do. Maybe swipe a bit more of your roommate's food. (if: $havePsychOffer is true)[ Pulling the sheet of paper you got from the girl you ran into earlier out of your bag, you see that one of the sessions for her experiment is on tonight. You could go to that, but she's also running it for the next couple of nights for people who can't make it tonight.](if: $letterRead is true)[ There's also that mysterious letter you got earlier. A mysterious job offer at a warehouse after dark? Could be interesting. Could also be someone trying to kidnap you... there's only one way to find out.] [[Go back to your dorm room->N1, Room]] (if: $havePsychOffer is true)[[[Head off to that psychology experiment <span class="font75">why do you keep calling it an experiment? That doesn't make you feel better</span>->N1, Psych Experiment]] ](if: $letterRead is true)[[[See what's up with that crazy offer in the warehouse->N1, Warehouse]] ]As you get back to your room, it's time for dinner. You don't really have any food, but that's not really a problem. The fridge is still full of plenty of your roommate's food that isn't likely to be missed. It's a couple of days old, but that seems like a fair trade-off to make. [[Mmm, cold pizza.->N1, Room, p2]]You get to the room where psychology experiment is going to be. You're not the first person there, but you have a few minutes before it's supposed to start. Given there's plenty of food available, you grab a couple of muffins and something to drink, sit down, and start to eat. The girl who invited you is nowhere to be seen, at least for now. You ask some of the other people in the room, but they don't really know what's going on any more than you do. Just as you're about to grab another muffin, she enters the room. "Hi," she addresses the group, which is now about a dozen people looking in various states of boredom, "thanks for coming. I can see nobody here has eaten for days -" she gestures at the food table, which is still nearly overflowing. Sure, she looks nervous, but how nervous do you have to be for your jokes to be that bad? "- but if we could get started now, that'd be great. For those of you who don't know me, my name is Jessie and tonight I'm going to do a little experiment to see if any of us still have the animal instinct inside us from long, //looooooong// ago. Some of the people I've told about this have thought I was crazy" - several of the other people in the room look at each other, as if to say "Why would anyone think that?", but Jessie continues - "and if you think that, thanks anyway, but you can go now, enjoy your night". She pauses as if expecting people to leave. She's right though, a couple of people leave. Jessie watches them leave then turns back to the group. [[Go on, what does she say next?->N1, Psych Experiment, p2]]This strikes you as unsafe. Not just going to a random warehouse at night. The streets are barely lit and trucks go past <span class="font75">(and nearly deafen you</span> every couple of minutes. It doesn't help that while you've walked through here a zillion times (it's a great shortcut) you've never actually paid attention to which street is which. Eventually you find the correct the building. It's a big grey rectangle, just like every other large grey rectangle in the area. Its one distinguishing feature is that it is the place you want to be. At least, you think it is. There's no lights on inside, no cars parked outside, and basically nothing that says it's not as closed as every other big grey rectangular building you can see. Still, you approach the glass door at the front and knock, it's at this point you expect a bunch of people to jump out and congratulate themselves on the joke they just pulled. Or does that only happen when you get back? You usually keep a low profile, so you're not a big target for pranks. Amazingly, the last thing you expect to see happens: right in front of the door, you can see a dim light turn on, and a shadowy figure slowly approach the door. If this is a prank, it's done pretty well, if they managed to hide someone in there past closing time. The figure inside, still not showing their face, stops just before the door and poses you a question: "What is always coming but never arrives?" [[I don't know.->N1, Warehouse, Riddle Wrong]] [[Tomorrow->N1, Warehouse, Riddle Right]] [[My order from Amazon->N1, Warehouse, Riddle Wrong]] [[A train travelling away from you->N1, Warehouse, Riddle Wrong]] [[Graduation day->N1, Warehouse, Riddle Wrong]] [[A riddle? Riddles are stupid->N1, Warehouse, Enter]] (link: "Forget this. I'm going home.")[(set: $doneWarehouse to true)(goto: "N1, Room, Late")]<!--[[N1, Room, Late]]-->Jessie resumes talking, although she seems a bit more sure of herself now. "You guys know about hypnosis, right? Not just about making you do things, but how you can remember things you didn't know you knew? Well what I'm trying to find out here is if you have memories from your ancestors thousands of years ago and -" "How?" someone blurts out, interrupting Jessie. "I'm going to hypnotise you one at a time and try and draw the memories to the surface and-" "Why do we all have to be here? Shouldn't you do it individually?" asked one guy in the middle of the group> Jessie seemed prepared for this question as well, it seemed: "I'm hoping that seeing the results in other people might help bring the memories I'm looking for in you a bit closer to the surface. If anyone has a problem with this, you can leave too, and thanks for coming.". The guy who asked the question leaves. Everyone else seems content to stay, except... [ (link: "She seems nuts. I'm outta here.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal + 1)(set: $donePsych to true)(goto: "N1, Room, Late")]<!--[[N1, Room, Late]]--> (link: "This could be interesting, I'm staying")[(replace: ?leavechoice)[](replace: ?p21)[(display: "N1, Psych Experiment, p2.1")]] ]<leavechoice|[]<p21|<!--[[N1, Psych Experiment, p2.1]]-->(if: ((history:) contains "N1, Room, p5 Calm") is false)[The walk back to your room is uneventful. Boring, even. It's a bit late to change your mind now, though. By the time you get back it's a bit late to do much of anything.](else:)[With all the time you've wasted already, it's a bit late to start doing something else.] You grab some leftover Chinese food out of the fridge and turn on the TV to whatever's on. You don't even remember when you last had Chinese, and you're pretty certain you didn't pay for it, but it's there and you can't //see// any fungus growing on it, so it's yours now. [[Couch is the second best thing to happen to potato. Fries is first. It's time for whatever trash is on TV!->N1, Room, Very Late]] (Spoiler alert: it sucks)<span id="psychn1p3choice1">Jessie starts waving a watch in front of your face. Apparently that's not just what happens on TV, real hypnotists do it too. After that you don't really remember anything she says, things just become a bit of a (text-style: "blur")[blur]. You start to dream. What do you see? (link: "An Excel spreadsheet.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal - 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice1").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice2").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "Your eighth birthday party. And visiting your best friend in the hospital immediately afterwards after you accidentally broke his nose trying to hit the pinata.")[<script>$("#psychn1p3choice1").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice2").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "A wild rabbit, just sitting there, waiting for you to pounce on it.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal + 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice1").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice2").removeClass("hidden"); </script>]</span><span id="psychn1p3choice2" class="hidden">What do you see next? (link: "A Mexican soap opera.")[<script>$("#psychn1p3choice2").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice3").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "A street, lined with shiny new fire hydrants.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal + 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice2").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice3").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "The biggest garden salad you've ever seen.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal - 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice2").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice3").removeClass("hidden"); </script>]</span><span id="psychn1p3choice3" class="hidden">Wow, these dreams keep on coming. How long are you under for? Anyway, what is it this time? (link: "A sumptuous scratching post.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal - 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice3").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice4").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "A red rubber ball, bouncing away from you.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal + 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice3").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice4").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "A 1983 Lamborghini Countach.")[<script>$("#psychn1p3choice3").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice4").removeClass("hidden"); </script>]</span><span id="psychn1p3choice4" class="hidden">You're beginning to detect a pattern here. The pattern is probably that psychology students like messing with unwitting volunteers. You're too busy to concern yourself with patterns though, since you see something else. (link: "A vet's office.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal - 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice4").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice5").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "Three big guys who look like bodybuilders, threatening you over unpaid student loans.")[<script>$("#psychn1p3choice4").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice5").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "You're in a car going down the freeway, but all you can think about is the open window.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal + 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice4").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3choice5").removeClass("hidden"); </script>]</span><span id="psychn1p3choice5" class="hidden">You're not tired any more. This has to be the last one, right? (link: "A patch of mud outside, next to a freshly cleaned floor, inside.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal + 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice5").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3finish").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "Mondays.")[<script>$("#psychn1p3choice5").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3finish").removeClass("hidden"); </script>] (link: "A frilly dress that you don't want to wear.")[(set: $madanimal to $madanimal - 1)<script>$("#psychn1p3choice5").addClass("hidden"); $("#psychn1p3finish").removeClass("hidden"); </script>]</span><span id="psychn1p3finish" class="hidden">[[You're coming to. That was... weird, to say the least.->N1, Psych Experiment, p4]]</span> "So what's your name?" Jessie asks of the student she's standing in front of. He looks pretty young; he must be new here. "I'm David" he replies. He almost looks a bit scared. Jessie seems to notice this and attempts to calm him down. "Don't worry", she says, "you'll be fine, and you probably won't even remember it afterwards". He calms down a bit, and she starts to hypnotise him. Other than making him bark like a dog <span class="font75">(which is funny, I don't care how you look at it)</span>, it seems to go fairly uneventfully. After finishing with David, Jessie approaches you. [[Uh oh. I hope this doesn't make it onto the internet.->N1, Psych Experiment, p3]] "Alright, now that we've got that out of the way, who wants to go first?" Jessie asks. [(link: "Stick your hand up")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1)(set: $madanimal to $madanimal + 1)(replace: ?handchoice)[Your hand shoots up into the air. You're not the only one though, and she starts with someone else.](replace: ?p22)[(display: "N1, Psych Experiment, p2.2")]] (link: "Keep quiet")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity - 1)(replace: ?handchoice)[Nobody moves a muscle. Sick of waiting, she moves to someone in the middle of the group and starts with him.](replace: ?p22)[(display: "N1, Psych Experiment, p2.2")]]]<handchoice|[]<p22|<!--[[N1, Psych Experiment, p2.2]](set: $donePsych to true)(if: $madanimal >= 3)[You wake up. Jessie is standing over you, writing a lot of stuff in a notepad. Everyone else in the room is just staring at you, their eyes so wide that a deer in headlights looks like it's just out for a casual evening stroll. And your throat is sore. What happened while you were under? There's an awkward silence, the only sounds coming from the air conditioner in the corner and Jessie furiously scribbling with her pen. She's the first one to speak up. "Well, that was, um, pretty great. I'd like to thank everyone for coming, but that's, um, all we have time for tonight". She hasn't seemed this nervous since(if: (history:) contains("Help the girl"))[ you ran in to her <span class="font75">(literally, in case, you don't remember)</span> earlier today](else:)[, well, ever]. Somehow, that doesn't fill you with confidence. "Excuse me," you say to her as she starts packing up her things, "but what just happened?" She looks in your general direction but seems to be avoiding actually meeting your gaze. She takes a couple of moments to reply, "Um. Um, I still need to write this up. I'll talk to you, um, later." With that she quickly leaves, leaving you sitting alone in the room. Seeing as there's nothing left to do, you get out of the chair and [[head back to your room->N1, Room, Very Late]].](else:)[You wake up. Everyone looks pretty bored. Jessie is sitting on a desk on the other side of the room. It looks like she's taking notes, but you suspect she might be doodling <span class="font75">(you've spent long enough doing that to know what it looks like)</span>. She gets up and says half-heartedly "Okay, thanks for sharing, who's next?" while looking around the room. The next few people seem to be as boring as you must have been. A couple of them give half-hearted growls, but you think they're humouring Jessie. A couple of hours later, everyone looks even more bored. Jessie wraps things up by going to the centre of the room and telling the group "Okay everyone, thanks for coming, and feel free to take any of the food that's left over - I've seen how empty the average fridge is around here." And with that //bon mot// she grabs a couple of cold slices of pizza and leaves. You'd think it's her job to clean up, but apparently it isn't. Well, it isn't yours either, so you grab half a pineapple upside-down cake and [[head back to your room->N1, Room, Very Late]] before anyone can stop you.](if: $havePsychOffer is not true)[Suddenly, your stomach starts quivering. It's probably something you ate, but that's not that important right now. You have to get to the toilet ''NOW!'' You open your door, burst into the hallway, force open the bathroom door and... =><= <span class="font75">I'm editing this part out for your own good. Trust me.</span> <== Ahh, much better. On the way back to your room you see a piece of paper stuck to the notice board. It's one like that girl was trying to hand out earlier! Since she's not trying to pressure you any more, you grab it and read it on the way back to your room. It seems she's a psychology student looking for volunteers to get hypnotised for an experiment. Something about genetic memory and the "animal instinct". Sounds like it could be fun. She was doing it tonight (you must have missed that) but it's on again tomorrow night. Maybe you'll go? (set: $havePsychOffer to true)](if: $letterRead is not true)[Hey, there's that mysterious letter that arrived earlier. You've got plenty of time to read it now. You open the envelope and read the letter: --- (display: "The letter")<!--[[The letter]]--> --- Well that's all well and good (and by good, it's rather weird), but it's a bit late now. Guess you'll never find out what they wanted. It's sort of intriguing, but you figure if they were serious, they wouldn't be so mysterious. Actually, is anyone who has a legitimate job offer ever //that// mysterious. Maybe it's a joke. Probably a joke, now that you think about it. Good thing you didn't waste your time going there. (set: $letterRead to true)]It's getting pretty late now. You don't really have much to do tomorrow, but you've tried taking advantage of that to stay up all night and sleep the following day, and let's just say that while it's great for staying up all of tomorrow night as well, it's not a good look when you fall asleep in class the next day. Especially since you snore. Thankfully the teacher was nice enough to hold up the whole class and wait for you to wake up of your own accord, then the following class hold a pop quiz on everything the class was supposed to have learnt while you were sleeping. You made a lot of friends that day. [[I better get to sleep then->M2, Room]]The man inside says with a creaky voice "That is... incorrect." You stare at him for a couple of minutes. He just stands there. Finally, in frustration, you yell "Why would you send me here just to ask me a riddle I have no way of knowing the answer to?" "I did not send for you," he says - and his voice seems to be getting raspier, it may well be the last thing he says - "I only wait by the door." [[Show him the letter->N1, Warehouse, Riddle Wrong, p2]] (link: "Give up and head home")[(set: $doneWarehouse to true)(goto: "N1, Room, Late")]<!--[[N1, Room, Late]]-->"That is... correct" the person inside says with a creaky voice. You stand there for a couple of minutes, looking at him expectantly. Finally you ask impatiently "Well? Aren't you going to let me in? I got your stupid riddle right, now let me in!" He motions towards the door. "''Now'' you have passed the test. You may enter." [[What was his problem? Open the door.->N1, Warehouse, Enter]](if: not (((history:) contains "N1, Warehouse, Riddle Right") or ((history:) contains "N1, Warehouse, Riddle Wrong")))[(set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness + 1)"That's what I wanted to hear!" the robed person says, as happily as it sounds like they can. They open the door and let you in. ]You follow the mysterious robed person into a back room. There's nobody else there and only the entrance you came in through. He grabs a book on a bookcase on the back wall and suddenly the bookcase slides over to reveal a staircase heading down. <span class="font75">(You can't help but let out a little squeal of glee. That ''is'' cool.)</span> The room you're in now barely has any light, but you can see downstairs is lit by cool, efficient LED lighting. The old //<span class="font75">(Probably? It's hard to tell.)</span>// man beckons downstairs, but says nothing. It's pretty obvious he wants you to go down. (link: "Now I just //have// to know what's downstairs.")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Downstairs")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Downstairs]]--> (link: "This is just too weird. I'm outta here.")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity - 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Enter, Chicken")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Enter, Chicken]]--> "Ah," he croaks, "why didn't you say you had one of those? Come right in, of course." He then unlocks the door and motions to the handle. [[About time!->N1, Warehouse, Enter]]You proceed slowly downstairs. You hear a creak, then a thud as the door/bookcase is closed behind you. Taking a quick look back, you can't see any buttons or switches or anything to open it. Guess there's only one way to go now. This would be cooler if it was like a dungeon or something, with damp stone walls, lit by torches, with the occasional rat. Well maybe not the rat. But this is concrete with precision edges, lit by unnervingly even overhead lighting. Still, they get points in your book for the secret entrance. As you finish that thought, you realise: how far down does this thing go? You haven't stopped moving downstairs since you went through the secret door, and you're still going. At least you're getting some exercise (or you will on the way back up, anyway). Then, as if to prove your theory that it's an infinite staircase wrong, you can see the bottom ahead. At the bottom of the stairs, it's... a long, grey concrete hallway. There's nothing on either side, but you think you can see a door at the end. Excited to finally be somewhere (wherever that may be) you rush down the hall. At the end is a wooden door with a glass window, which says: =><= <span class="monospace">Human Resources, Inc. HR Department</span> <== As you read that, you think you hear someone scream in pain somewhere in the distance behind you. And was that a whipping noise? <span class="font75">(How do you know what that sounds like, anyway?</span> Suddenly you a hear a (text-style: "blink")[ding!] to your left. You turn to see doors to a lift open, and the hooded person who let you in step out. He takes his hood off. Hey! He's gotta be in his 30s! "What took you so long?" he asks (he doesn't sound old any more, either). (link: "Punch him in the face")[(set: $pride to $pride + 1)(set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness + 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room]]--> (link: "Stammer incoherently")[(set: $intelligence to $intelligence - 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room]]--> (link: "Keep your mouth shut")[(set: $pride to $pride - 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room]]-->You turn to leave. The robed person speaks up again: (text-style: "shudder")["If you leave now, you may never return."] That sounded rather... ominous. (link: "That seals the deal. I'm gone.")[(set: $doneWarehouse to true)(goto: "N1, Room, Late")]<!--[[N1, Room, Late]]--> [[I guess he has a point. Whatever this is, I don't think I want to miss it.->N1, Warehouse, Downstairs]] "The strong, silent type, eh?" your guide responds, "Don't worry, soon you'll learn that in business, actions speak louder than words." And with that, he opens the door. Inside is... a corporate board room, complete with a long table with people in suits sitting down each side. At the other end is someone in what looks like a nicer (or at least a more expensive) suit, bent over a laptop, swearing under his breath. "%#$!ing PowerPoint!" he suddenly yells, "Never &*#@ing works!" You know a little bit about computers. Think you can help? [[Actually I don't know that much about computers->N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p2]] (link: "Have you tried turning it off then again?")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity - 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p2")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p2]]--> (link: (either: "Try unplugging the projector then plugging it back in again!", "Hold the Windows key and press P!"))[(set: $intelligence to $intelligence + 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p2")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p2]]--> (link: "Call tech support. What do you pay them for, anyway?")[(set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness + 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p2")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p2]]-->Seemingly ignoring your presence, the chairman <span class="font75">(at least you think he must be, he has the biggest chair)</span> lashes across the table with one of his arms, sending the laptop flying. It hits the ground and smashes into a zillion pieces. A couple of cleaning staff appear from a side door, swiftly sweep up the pieces and disappear as quickly as they came. Nobody else so much as bats an eyelid. The chairman looks at you and starts speaking, suddenly much calmer. "So, I suppose you want to know why we brought you here, don't you?" he says. What's your answer? (link: "\"When someone offers me a job, I try not to ask too many questions.\"")[(set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness + 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3.1")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3.1]]--> (link: "\"Of course I want to know!\"")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1)(set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness - 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3.2")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3.2]]-->"That's the right attitude!" he replies, "Asking questions leads to missed opportunities!" (display: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3")<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3]]-->"NO!" he yells, seemingly angry. "The more you know, the more liable you are personally. Knowing things stops you from using scapegoats!" (display: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3")<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3]]-->The board nods their heads in agreement (that, or they're just that scared of him). He seems to revel in their acknowledgements. "Now," he continues, "I suppose you'll want to know what you'll be doing here?" (link: "\"That's for the people actually doing the work to know.\"")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1)(set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness + 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4.1")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4.1]]--> (link: "\"Of course, how else am I supposed to do it?\"")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1)(set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness - 1)(goto: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4.2")]<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4.2]]-->The chairman points at you, looks at one side of the board and says "I like this one." (display: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4")<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4]]-->"Johnson, would you please?" the chairman asks while looking at the person closest to you. <span class="font125">(text-style: "rumble")[SLAP!]</span> That didn't seem necessary. The rest of the board acts like nothing happened. Johnson doesn't look the least bit sorry. (display: "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4")<!--[[N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p4]]--> (if: $madbusiness > 0)[The chairman stops for a second to think, then looks and you and says in a jovial tone "I think we've found a good one! Do you want the job?" [[Of course you want the job->N1, Warehouse, Board Room, Job Accepted]] [[You'd rather not sell your soul to the corporate machine this early in your life->N1, Warehouse, Board Room, No Job]]](else:)[Suddenly, the chairman's face drops. He actually looks a bit sullen. He droops down into his chair, looks down at nothing in particular and says "I'm sorry, the job offer is no longer available. Please leave." You're not sure what you did wrong, exactly, but it's probably a good idea to leave. [[But... but... but... okay. :(->N1, Warehouse, Board Room, No Job]]](set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness + 5)(set: $doneWarehouse to true)The chairman looks at you and with an even more booming voice than usual <span class="font75">(seriously, this guy is loud, you might want to get your hearing checked)</span> says "Welcome, welcome! I'm sure you're eager to get started, but there's some paperwork to do -" he starts motioning at someone towards your end of the board, who gets up and starts shooing you out "- we'll call you when we need you. Probably going to be a couple of days. See you around!" And with that, the board member pushes you out the door and slams it shut behind you. That seems a bit weird, considering how eager they were to get you there, but you don't seem to have much choice in the matter. You press the button to call the lift, and when you get in, it looks... familiar. It looks just like the lift in your building. Wait a minute... this can't be the lift from your building, can it? Should you press the button for your floor? [[This can't be my lift. Just go to the ground.->N1, Warehouse, Exit, Ground]] [[Sure, what's the harm?->N1, Warehouse, Exit, Your Floor]](set: $madbusiness to $madbusiness - 5)(set: $doneWarehouse to true)Everyone in the room seems to avoid looking at you. Except the chairman. He's glaring at you. He doesn't look like someone you want to stay on the bad side of, so you turn and leave quickly, closing the door behind you. Now there's just that long walk back along the hallway, up all those stairs (you try to count them, but you think you hear something behind you and lose track... and you're certainly not going back down to the bottom to start your count again), through the warehouse, along the darkened streets of the industrial district and across campus to get to your room. By the time you get back, it's pretty late. And you're still not sure whether the whole thing was just a big, elaborate joke. But that's probably something you should concern yourself with another day. [[Now that you mention it, I am starting to feel a bit tired...->N1, Room, Very Late]]A short ride later, the doors open. Hey, this ''is'' your building. This is either a big coincidence or really creepy. Possibly both. Oh well, there's not much else to be done about it now. You press the button for your floor and head to your room. [[Home is where the heart is! Or in your case, where the big pile of dirty laundry is.->N1, Room, Very Late]]The doors open to your floor. You //knew// it. Although as tired as you are, you don't really think about why their lift goes straight to your building. Fortunately your room is mere steps away. [[Try to make it to the bed before you fall asleep this time.->N1, Room, Very Late]]That really hit the spot. As you consider building a shrine to whoever invented the microwave, you think about the assignment you have due next week. You //could// (maybe even should) work on it, but where's the fun in that? [[Work on the assignment->N1, Room, p3 Work]] [[Find some cat videos online->N1, Room, p3 Net]](set: $intelligence to $intelligence + 1)You try. You really do try. You open a word processor and sit there, staring at it, wanting to work but not really able to make yourself do it, for what seems like hours. Eventually, still staring at a blank page, you give up. This just isn't happening tonight. [[To the kittehs!->N1, Room, p4]](set: $punctuality to $punctuality - 1)Good thing you've got your priorities straight. It seems the gods of cute are against you though, because the internet is down. <span class="font125">(text-color: "#FF0000")[(text-style: "blink")[RED ALERT THE INTERNET IS DOWN I REPEAT THE INTERNET IS DOWN WE'RE DOOMED CRAPCRAPCRAPCRAPCRAPCRAPCRAP]]</span> [[Oh wait, it just came back up->N1, Room, p4]]Awww, the cats are cute. And it's sort of amazing what they can do, sometimes. But there's one thing you weren't counting on. You should have remembered, but you just caught up in the excitement. (set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin + 1)**YouTube comments**. The people who left some of these must be some of the lowest forms of life on the planet. Or probably more likely, whatever detritus got stuck to the shoes of what you now figure is probably the second lowest forms of life on the planet. But you just have to accept that they happen. Or do you? [[I'm not getting involved in that, even though they deserve it. Peace, calm and all that.->N1, Room, p5 Calm]] [[Counter-trolling offensive engaged! Arm the meme cannons!->N1, Room, p5 Attack]](set: $pride to $pride - 1)Okay, so that video is tainted. But the others can't all be, right? (link: "See how far the corruption spreads")[(set: $curiousity to $curiousity + 1)(goto: "N1, Room, p6")]<!--[[N1, Room, p6]]--> (link: "Just give up on the internet for tonight")[(set: $doneInternet to true)(set: $curiousity to $curiousity - 1)(goto: "N1, Room, Late")]<!--[[N1, Room, Late]]-->(set: $intelligence to $intelligence - 1)(set: $pride to $pride + 1)(set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin + 2)It's a good thing you got all that typing practice in... last time you got annoyed by comments. Your keys fly from key to key so fast you're almost surprised the keyboard doesn't start smoking. It takes a little while, but finally you're sure you've convincingly shut down anyone who would dare bring their (obviously incorrect) opinions to this video. That was only one battle, though. The war has just begun. [[To arms!->N1, Room, p6]]You probably shouldn't have gotten involved this much. Comments on the internet are a neverending cesspool, and you just dived in at the deep end. You can actually feel you brain cells dying, individually, just by reading them. Okay, what did that person, whose username consists of thinly veiled racial insults and seemingly random numbers, just say about your mother? He/she/they/it have never even ''met'' your mother. That's it, now you're <span class="font125">(text-style: "shudder")[***mad***]</span>. You're not going to just let them get with that, are you? (link: "Might as well. There's not that much I can do about it.")[(set: $pride to $pride - 2)(set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin - 2)(goto: "N1, Room, p7")]<!--[[N1, Room, p7]]--> (link: "Insult their mother back")[(set: $intelligence to $intelligence - 1)(set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin + 1)(goto: "N1, Room, p7")]<!--[[N1, Room, p7]]--> (link: "Look up their Facebook profile, find a compromising photo, then Photoshop the hell out of it anyway")[(set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin + 2)(goto: "N1, Room, p7")]<!--[[N1, Room, p7]]-->Okay, calm down now. That's another video worth of comments done. Just for something different, you decide to watch a new video. //A couple of minutes later// Meh. It wasn't that good, but it's not like you're going to demand a refund for your valuable time. There is a nice clean and empty comments section though. What do you do there? [[Thank the user who uploaded the video for their contribution to the web, even though it wasn't that great->N1, Room, p8 Thank]] [[Nothing. Your mum always said that if you don't have anything nice to say, you shouldn't say anything at all->N1, Room, p8 None]] [[Demand a refund for your valuable time->N1, Room, p8 Refund]] [[Insinuate that certain actions transpired between the uploader's mother and a fully grown Kodiak bear, while the father watched->N1, Room, p8 Bear]](set: $conscience to $conscience + 1)(set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin - 1)You're right. The internet is a bad enough place without you starting things, even if you might //occasionally// try to finish them. Hopefully you've made the person who uploaded that feel a bit better. [[Best to end a high note->N1, Room, p9]](set: $pride to $pride + 1)You actually feel a bit proud of yourself for that one. You could have been mean (or worse) but you took the high ground. And while you could keep watching more videos, you're not sure you'll be able to keep such saintly behaviour up for too long. [[Probably a good idea to quit now, then->N1, Room, p9]](set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin + 1)That'll show 'em for wasting your time. How dare they sully the internet by posting their pointless crap on it? Actually, speaking of your time, it's getting late. [[So it is->N1, Room, p9]](set: $conscience to $conscience - 1)(set: $madmaudlin to $madmaudlin + 2)That feels better. And if you didn't do it, somebody else was going to, right. It is nice to be the first one. Strangely satisfying. But now due to their stupid video it's getting pretty late. You should consider giving up your promising internet writing career, at least for tonight. [[Well, I //am// at my best when I've had my beauty sleep, so alright->N1, Room, p9]](set: $doneInternet to true)Looking at the clock in the corner of the screen, it really hits home that it's time you should be doing something else. In that it's the time when everyone else finishes whatever else they were doing and turns on their computers, so the internet slows down to a crawl. [[Turn the computer off, since I'm not going to be able to do anything worth doing->N1, Room, Very Late]]You wake up. Your alarm is buzzing. You're tired, although you have a theory that's just a physiological reaction to the sound of an alarm that's built in to humans. Groggily, you open your eyes. The alarm is staring at you, and... it's 10:30? That can't be right. Especially since it's dark. And it sounds like someone a few doors down is having a party. Did you just sleep through the whole day? And why are you still tired? It's a good thing you didn't have anything on today because you just missed it. All of it. And you can still barely keep yourself awake. Somehow you manage to reset your alarm for tomorrow morning, even though you can barely keep your eyes open. And that's good because [[ZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzz<sub>zzzzzzzzzz...</sub>->EM3, Setup]](display: "Function: Order Madness")<!--[[Function: Order Madness]]--> (if: $topmadness <= 0)[(goto: "EM3, Dream, Boring")]<!--[[EM3, Dream, Boring]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "business")[(goto: "EM3, Dream, Business")]<!--[[EM3, Dream, Business]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "animal")[(goto: "EM3, Dream, Animal")]<!--[[EM3, Dream, Animal]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "maudlin")[(goto: "EM3, Dream, Maudlin")]<!--[[EM3, Dream, Maudlin]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "tie")[(goto: "EM3, Dream, Boring")]<!--[[EM3, Dream, Boring]]-->{ (if: ($madbusiness >= $madanimal) and ($madbusiness >= $madmaudlin) and ($madanimal >= $madmaudlin))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "business", "animal", "maudlin"))] (elseif: ($madbusiness >= $madanimal) and ($madbusiness >= $madmaudlin) and ($madmaudlin >= $madanimal))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "business", "maudlin", "animal"))] (elseif: ($madbusiness >= $madanimal) and ($madbusiness >= $madmaudlin) and ($madanimal is $madmaudlin))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "business", "animal", "maudlin"))] (elseif: ($madanimal >= $madbusiness) and ($madanimal >= $madmaudlin) and ($madbusiness > $madmaudlin))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "animal", "business", "maudlin"))] (elseif: ($madanimal >= $madbusiness) and ($madanimal >= $madmaudlin) and ($madmaudlin > $madbusiness))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "animal", "maudlin", "business"))] (elseif: ($madanimal >= $madbusiness) and ($madanimal >= $madmaudlin) and ($madbusiness is $madmaudlin))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "animal", "business", "maudlin"))] (elseif: ($madmaudlin >= $madbusiness) and ($madmaudlin >= $madanimal) and ($madbusiness >= $madanimal))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "maudlin", "business", "animal"))] (elseif: ($madmaudlin >= $madbusiness) and ($madmaudlin >= $madanimal) and ($madanimal >= $madbusiness))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "maudlin", "animal", "business"))] (elseif: ($madmaudlin >= $madbusiness) and ($madmaudlin >= $madanimal) and ($madbusiness is $madanimal))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "maudlin", "business", "animal"))] (elseif: ($madbusiness is $madanimal) and ($madanimal is $madmaudlin))[(set: $madnessOrder to (array: "tie", "business", "animal", "maudlin"))] (if: $madnessOrder's 1st is "business")[(set: $topmadness to $madbusiness)] (if: $madnessOrder's 1st is "animal")[(set: $topmadness to $madanimal)] (if: $madnessOrder's 1st is "maudlin")[(set: $topmadness to $madmaudlin)] (if: $madnessOrder's 1st is "tie")[(set: $topmadness to 0)] }You find yourself standing in a room, It looks like mission control from NASA. The back wall is covered by screens displaying a bunch of different things (you're not sure what any of them are) and in the room there's about twenty people at desks, with a couple of monitors each (you're not sure what any of them are doing). You're standing in a position above them, like you're in charge. Maybe this is the job you were promised? Suddenly the biggest screen on the back wall changes. It shows a pristine white room with a few people... who look like they're chained to the wall? Suddenly the picture changes to a different angle and all you can see is a few people in white coats walking forward slowly. And then it changes again to show a few graphs, which obviously you have no idea of the meaning of. After a second, the graphs change. Nobody says anything, but you could swear you just felt a chill go up your spine. Whatever someone must have slipped you to keep you asleep this long must be causing this, right? Sure, the job "interview" was weird, but this is like something out of a horror movie, whereas the interview was like something out of... oh wait. But this has to just be a nightmare, right? And even if it isn't, in your financial situation, are you really one to argue? <span class="font125">(text-style: "blink")[[[BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP->M3, Room]]]</span>Birds are chirping. Which is unusual, because people with slingshots have, err... //gently encouraged// pretty much all of the ones that live near your building to find alternate accommodations. You open your eyes. You're... in the middle of a forest. Either you're the victim of a very elaborate prank or you're dreaming. You hope it's the latter. In the distance, you see a wild turkey, standing there. It looks delicious. Did you just actually lick your lips? That is one good looking bird... You see something darting across out of the corner of your eye. Was that a squirrel? You look around, and spot it climbing along a branch. You don't really know why, but you're not happy with it there. You want it gone. It's mocking you. It's <span class="font125">(text-style: "blink")[[[BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP->M3, Room]]]</span>You're sitting at your computer again. You seem to spend a lot of time here. Lately, you actually seem to have gotten fairly adept at shutting down other people online. They don't see it that way, of course, but you know you're right. After another couple of comments that would put //War and Peace// to shame, you're hungry. The fridge is (surprisingly) empty, so you'll have to go outside to get something. Great, outside... there's people there. You don't really have a lot of choice though. As you exit the building you accidentally bump someone else with the door without looking. As you turn to look at them all you can see is grey outline of them. They, sounding slightly annoyed, snap at you. "Watch where you're going!" You're probably in the wrong here, but without thinking you unleash a tirade of swearing that would make a Russian sailor jealous. Before you can say (or do) anything else to them, you turn back to face where you were going. Everyone has been replaced by grey cutouts. And they're all watching the scene you just helped make. You barge your way through the crowd (and don't feel bad about it, I mean why would you, they're grey cutouts, not people). Someone looks and you and asks if you're alright. That question just makes you angry, you just want to <span class="font125">(text-style: "blink")[[[BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP->M3, Room]]]</span>You're in class. At least you're not missing ''this'' class. You can't remember what class it is, but you're here. Distracted by looking at the various bits of paper on the desk in front of you, you almost don't hear your name being called. "Yes?". You're not exactly wordy, but you get straight to the point. "Are you ready to present your speech to the class?" asks the teacher. "Err... I guess?" you reply. You stand up and start collecting the paper on your desk. You notice the room has gone deathly quiet. Everyone is looking at you. Then they start whispering to each other. A few of them start giggling. Even the teacher isn't saying anything, but she is gaping. Which must mean something, because you've never seen here show any emotion. You look down. Yep, you're not wearing any clothes. That would explain a few things. But how did this happen. And what do you do now? You consider your options: * Everyone's already seen everything there is to see, so is there that much harm in staying? * You've got a lot of scraps of paper in front of you. Maybe you could fashion them into a loincloth? * Actually, it's probably just time to consider escape routes. There's a door at the front of the room and a door at the back, and you just happen to be sitting in the middle. Good job there. * A thought occurs: why didn't they get all the laughing out of the way when you first came in the room (not) dressed like this? * Come to think of it, why ''are'' you there, (not) dressed like this? You've forgotten things before, but never all your clothes. * Okay, the why probably isn't important right now. Back to the exit plan. You drop everything and rush for the back door. You make it outside just in time for the door to muffle out //most// of the eruption of laughter from inside. Now, thankfully, you're outside, with only a heavily populated area between you and clothes, glorious clothes. Crap, you hadn't thought about this part. Well, there's only one thing to do now. You take a deep breath, line up like a runner waiting for the starting pistol, and <span class="font125">(text-style: "blink")[[[BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP->M3, Room]]]</span>You open your eyes. You're lying in bed, facing the alarm clock you see every morning. It's 8:00, which is about when you expected to get up. And you're in your bed, which is about where you expected to get up. So it's all good, by the looks of it. That was one pretty messed up dream though. You might have to ask someone about it. You don't really have time for that now, though. Nor do you have time for breakfast, despite the protestations of your stomach grumbling. You have to get to class. It's a pretty easy class, but not showing up is one of the few ways you can fail. So you jump out of bed, (if: (history:) contains "EM3, Dream, Boring")[make sure you ]get dressed, grab your things and [[head out the door->M3, Outside, Setup]].(if: $topmadness <= 0)[(goto: "M3, Boring, Outside")]<!--[[M3, Boring, Outside]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "business")[(goto: "M3, Business, Outside")]<!--[[M3, Business, Outside]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "animal")[(goto: "M3, Animal, Outside")]<!--[[M3, Animal, Outside]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "maudlin")[(goto: "M3, Maudlin, Outside")]<!--[[M3, Maudlin, Outside]]--> (elseif: $madnessOrder's 1st is "tie")[(goto: "M3, Boring, Outside")]<!--[[M3, Boring, Outside]]-->It's a fairly uneventful walk to class. It's also fairly uneventful when you get to class, find a seat, and sit down. And it's ''really'' uneventful as you sit there waiting for an hour as the teacher never shows up. Waiting has never been your strong suit, and while there probably are rules about how long you have to wait for a teacher before you don't lose marks for not being in class, you're not sure what they are. And it's classic movie month at the nearby cinema, so you can probably go watch something cool. [[Keep waiting. He'll probably show up two minutes after I leave, and I'm going to fail if I miss one more class.->M3, Boring, Outside, Keep Waiting]] [[Forget this. I've got better things to do than wait here all morning.->M3, Boring, Outside, Leave Class]]As you step outside, your phone starts ringing. It's a blocked number, so you answer it cautiously. "Hello?" You immediately recognise the voice of the chairman you met under the strange warehouse. "Hi there! I hope you had a good rest after our last meeting. Long rides in out lift can do that to people!" <span class="font75">(That explains a lot. Sort of.)</span> "I guess?" you answer, sort of hoping he'll get to the point soon. "How would you feel about starting today?" he asks. Somehow his voice is still booming, even when you turn the volume down. [["I don't know, I have class this morning"->M3, Business, Outside, p2 Reject]] [["Sure, see you soon!"->M3, Business, Outside, p2 Accept]](if: (history:) contains "N1, Psych Experiment")[Just before you get out the door, your phone rings. You answer it and before you can get a word in, someone starts talking: "Hi! It's Jessie. Remember me? I ran that psychology thing a couple of nights ago? If you've got a few minutes tonight, I'd like to talk about what happened. Find me in Room 603 at 6 sharp. I can't be there for long. I've got other stuff to do. Okay bye!" She hangs up before you get a word in. You should probably go talk to her later. ]You open the door to the outside, you can smell the freshly cut grass, the leaves in the trees, someone's having a barbecue, and... Mmmm... //barbecue//. You can't stop thinking about it. You head straight over there. Someone you've never met is standing over it, watching all their food cook. You don't say anything, and without really thinking, you just grab a couple of steaks and start shoving them into your moth. They're not fully cooked yet, but you don't care. They're pretty hot, but that doesn't seem to bother you. You don't even notice the heat. What you do notice is the person who (formerly) owned those steaks. He doesn't look very happy with you. You figure it's best to get out of there. And quickly. Running seems like the best option. So you start running towards your next class. You can still taste the steak in your mouth. It's at least as delicious as you thought it would be. You're so distracted enjoying the steak that at one point you trip, but you just use your hands to pick yourself mid-stride and keep running, never slowing down. Whoa, when did you become such an athlete? By the time you get to your classroom, you've lost the chef. You don't remember being that fast, but in this case it came in quite handy, so you'll let that slide. Unfortunately you have a full day of class without even a lunch break today, so you'll be cooped up inside for hours. You enjoy your last breath of fresh air and head inside. [[To learning! Because it's totally not a struggle to keep myself awake during six hours of lectures!->A3, Animal, Class]]Going outside, you see a bunch of people. And you realise... you don't really care about any of them. They could be (and for all you know, they are) the same people whose unintelligible comments you have to spend your valuable time rebuking, lest someone on the internet less fortunate than yourself get the wrong idea from them. On the street near you, you see someone drop their wallet and stop to pick it up, completely unaware of the car coming their way. You're not sure why the car isn't slowing down either, but does it matter? You could call out to them to try to get their attention, but you could just be making your life harder by doing that. They might even be behind one of the comments you had such a problem with last week, and you don't want to have to worry yourself with it again. The car keeps coming and you just stand there, watching. At the last second, someone on the side of the street grabs them and pulls them out of the way of the car. That's great... you guess. Isn't it? Since, at best, it's not really making your life any better, and it could just be making it worse. You couldn't exactly have stopped them helping though, if only because someone would probably have stopped you. Still, you can't help but feel that it might have been nice if nobody had interfered. [[Well, time to go to class->M3, Maudlin, Class]] (if: $intelligence >= 2)[[[Well, I'm a psychopath... should probably get that looked at->M3, Maudlin, Help]]]You wait there for another hour. You're the only one still waiting. Another half hour passes. Okay, now the teacher is definitely a no-show. [[It's not too late to catch that movie->M3, Boring, Cinema]]You leave class. You're pretty sure the teacher isn't going to show up right now. And if you do lose marks you'll fight it, up to the highest court in the land, if you have to! But where to now? [[Guess I could go catch a movie->M3, Boring, Cinema]] (if: ($curiousity >= 2) and ($doneWarehouse is false))[[[Wonder what's happening at that weird warehouse in the industrial district I got that letter from->M3, Business, Boring Entrance]]] (elseif: ($curiousity >= 2))[[[I've always wondered what that new burger place a couple of streets over tastes like->M3, Boring, Burger Place]]]Oh, cool, //Frankenstein// is on. You love all the old monster movies. And it starts in five minutes, so you don't have to wait. You buy your ticket and take a seat, waiting for it to start. (text-style: "shudder")[Yawn]. Oh. Excuse you. Apparently waiting so long for the teacher nearly did bore you to death. <span class="font125">(text-style: "shudder")[[[YAWN->M3, Boring, Cinema, p2]]]</span>Fortunately, you remember the address from the letter (even if you're not quite sure where you put the letter, or more accurately, which fast food wrapper it must have ended up under by now, so you head down to the industrial district and find the right corner. (display: "M3, Business, Warehouse")<!--[[M3, Business, Warehouse]]-->You walk to the new Burger Tank. Hey, the Renaissance Faire is in town, at the showground a couple of buildings up from the Burger Tank. Maybe you can check that out after your burger. [What do you want on your burger? (link: "Eww, no pickles!")[(replace: ?burgerchoice)[(display: "M3, Boring, Burger Place, s2")])]<!--[[M3, Boring, Burger Place, s2]]--> (link: "Actually, I don't like pickles //or// onion")[(replace: ?burgerchoice)[(display: "M3, Boring, Burger Place, s2")])]<!--[[M3, Boring, Burger Place, s2]]-->]<burgerchoice|Good thing the grand opening specials are still on. This place might be a bit out of your budget if they weren't. Not that it's very expensive. It's just that your only employment is as a speculative investor. Specifically, you invest in the lottery after speculating about what numbers will win. A few minutes after placing your order, you think you hear your name called. You're starving! You grab the bag they put on the counter, fish out the burger, unwrap it as quickly as you can, and take a big bite. Are those... //pickles//? Just as you're about to complain, someone taps you on the shoulder. You turn around and see one of the tallest, most musclebound jousters you've ever seen fit into a suit of armour (and you've seen more than you think you might). "That's ''my'' burger." he says forcefully. "Um... sorry?" you squeak out, not trying to do an impression of a mouse, but succeeding at it quite admirably regardless. He doesn't seem to be in the mood for apologies. And his jousting friends seem to be getting up to provide some backup (not that he needs it). [Time to go!]<btankouttahere| (click-replace: ?btankouttahere)[You dart around him and head for the door. Bursting into the wide open world, which way do you run? [Turn left]<btankexitleft|(click-replace: ?btankexitleft)[The renaissance faire is that way, and I'm guessing that jouster has more friends down there. Probably not a good idea.] [[Turn right->M3, Boring, Burger Finale]]]The jouster and his fellow combatants chase you out of the Burger Tank. He stops for a second and roars... loudly. You're sure that there's no intelligible words in there (except to bears), but it seems to get the message across. What seems like most of Victorian England comes rushing out of the Renaissance Faire and joins the chase. As you run from the angry mob, you can hear the screaming. You can't make out what they're saying... you're concerning yourself more with the sound of the flaming torches. The torches somehow seem like more of a threat the lances. And swords. And bows. And several other things you can't name, but look like they'll hurt. So you keep running. Running down the middle of a street isn't the safest thing in the world, but you'll take it over what's behind you any day. If only you hadn't taken that jouster's burger... that was a pretty rude thing to do. Still running. You're starting to run out of breath. You come up to another street. You don't think there's any cars coming, but you'll take your chances anyway. You take two steps into the street and... <span class="font125">(text-style: "smear")[''Bang'']</span> Yep, that was a car. Travelling full speed. You're dead. I hope you learned your lesson. (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->=><= ##The End (link: "Restart")[<script>location.reload();</script>]You wake up. In front of you, you see an angry mob. They're running at you, carrying torches and pitchforks. This isn't good. And why are you sitting down? You get up, turn around and start running. As you go through a doorway <span style="font75">(why is the angry mob chasing you inside?)</span> you're blinded by the light. Where is this coming from? Where are you going? You don't stop though. You can still hear them screaming. You can't make out what they're saying... you're concerning yourself more with the sound of the flaming torches. Where did they get those, anyway? What is this, Victorian England? =><= (text-style: "shudder")[<span class="font125">SMASH</span>] <== Suddenly you slam head first into a plate glass window. Ow. The glass shatters, but fortunately none of it hurts you. You sit there in a daze for a couple of minutes, then look up. Your whole class is standing there, looking at you. They've probably been there since you ran away from a movie mob like an idiot. Fortunately, you're not hurt physically, but your pride? There's definitely none of that left. Nobody wants to admit that know you any more. And that makes you a social pariah. You might as well have a hand growing out of your head... actually that would probably make your more popular than you are now. But so would the bubonic plague, most likely. (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->Not missing a beat, the chairman makes you an offer. "What if we gave you a $10,000 bonus for starting today?" he asks. [["Well, how could I resist that?"->M3, Business, Warehouse]] (if: $conscience >= 2)[[["Sorry, I just don't think I can work for you"->M3, Business, Industrial District]]"Wonderful!" the chairman bellows, sounding like the phone's speaker - or your eardrum - is about to break. "We'll be seeing you shortly. The doorman should be much more friendly today. Just knock and he should let you in. And if he doesn't - well, just show him how much you want to come inside. Toodle-oo!" [[Well, I better head down there->M3, Business, Warehouse]]Taking a quick peek inside first (you can't see anyone, although they're probably watching you somehow), you knock on the door. Then you hear a noise from behind you. It sounds like... thunder? That can't be right. There's not a cloud in the sky. There's nobody coming to the door to let you in, either. (if: (history:) contains "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, Job Accepted")[You consider going back home to go down in the lift, but you have no idea how to activate it. ]Okay, the noise behind you has definitely gotten louder. And it sounds like... birds? [[Turn around to see just what that sound is->M3, Business, Warehouse, p2]]You decide, despite not accepting their job offer, to take a look and see if you can figure out (from the outside, of course) just what it is they're doing down there. After some of the things you heard last time, you don't want to go back down there. Standing on the side of Rose St, wondering if any of the buildings nearby will give you a good vantage point, you hear a rumbling behind you. Looking back, you see a mob of protesters holding up signs with messages such as "''Human Resources Inc is EVIL!!''", "''STOP HRI''" and "''SAVE THEM!''". You're assuming that last one isn't referring to the company or the executives you met, but they could make it a bit more clear. The mob is catching up to you pretty quickly. Out of instinct, you start to run. As you run from them, you can hear screaming. You can't make out what they're saying, although it's probably some catchy chant about stopping HRI. Personally, you're concerning yourself more with the sound of the flaming torches. Where did they get those, anyway? What is this, Victorian England? Then you realise something; they're not here for you. You stop running, calmly step to the side and they march right past you. [[That was a close one->A3, Business, TV]]You turn around. Nope, not birds, it's an angry mob of protesters. They're holding signs. You squint to see what they say. After a few seconds you can see signs with messages like ''Human Resources Inc is EVIL!!!'' and ''STOP HRI NOW!''. Wait... wasn't that the name of the company you're here to work for? You stop to contemplate this thought... for about a second. Then you decide not being there would be the best course of action. [[RUUUUUUUUUUUUNN!!!->M3, Business, Warehouse, p3]]Unfortunately, the protesters saw you. And they figured you worked there or something. Where would that get a silly idea like that? Unfortunately, based on that //silly// idea, they start chasing after you. As you run from the angry mob of protesters, you can hear the screaming. You can't make out what they're saying... you're concerning yourself more with the sound of the flaming torches. Where did they get those, anyway? What is this, Victorian England? Unfortunately while you're faster than most of them (carrying a picket sign slows you down more than you might think) you can't beat all of them. A few split off from the main group and manage to catch up to you. They tackle you to the ground and hold you there until the rest of the mob catches up. Luckily for you, the mob is less interested in hurting you, and more interesting in calling the police to have you taken to the biggest, hardest-to-escape-from jail they can find. The cops arrive shortly after. [[To serve and protect, right? The cops have to help!->A3, Business, Court]]The police waste no time in cuffing you, dragging you to the station, reading you your rights and then dragging you to court. You didn't know it could happen that quickly (or in that order), but you're hardly in a position to argue. They do give you a lawyer (which is good, because you can't afford one). Unfortunately you're his first case, and he only barely passed the exams to become a lawyer. HRI sends a lawyer (but none of the board members), but he's not there to help you. Apparently when they call themselves "Human Resources, Inc" they mean it. In that humans are resources. And that they perform some, let's say, //unethical// testing of unapproved medical products on humans. You don't know what this has to do with you, but the HRI lawyer pulls out some paperwork showing you accepting a job as Executive Vice President and personally authorising all the experiments for the past five years. You don't remember signing anything (especially not five years ago) but it ''is'' your signature. (if: (history:) contains "N1, Warehouse, Board Room, p3.2")[Then you remember what the chairman told you about making sure you have a scapegoat... you just didn't think it would be you. ] Your lawyer does his best to argue your case (between frequent trips to the bathroom to throw up out of nervousness) but it's hopeless. You're sentenced to life in prison, and when you get there, you think you can even see one of the guards literally throw away the key to your cell. Guess this is what you get for trying to get ahead in business. (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->Watching the TV a few weeks later, you hear about a class action lawsuit being brought against HRI for unauthorised medical tests on humans. They're looking for witnesses. Eager to see if you can help, you go down to the court and talk to them. Apparently you got closer to the executives than anyone before you. Thanks in part to your testimony, most of the board gets thrown in jail (don't worry, the ones that didn't got community service... cleaning up highways that had had sewage spills on them). For being brave enough to share your information, the local mayor presents you with a medal. It doesn't exactly make you many friends your own age (frankly, it makes them see you as a bit of a dork) but all your teachers seem rather impressed by it. That makes getting good marks for the rest of your course easy, and afterwards you get a high paying job, move to New York and get an apartment overlooking Central Park. And even though your classmates snubbed you, they eventually warm up and you become great friends with several of them. All because you were thoughtful enough to help out where you could. (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->So you managed to survive class. Class//es//, actually, since you had two in a row. And while you're bored out of your mind, that's not unusual. You're not usually this hungry. You're (text-style: "shudder")[***starving***]. What are you going to do? [[Gotta get something to eat, of course!->N3, Animal, Outside Eat]] [[I should see if I can find that girl Jessie to see what she has to say->N3, Animal, Outside Girl]]You start to head towards the food court. But now that seems like it's miles away (it really isn't). And you can smell fresh meat. Nobody's cooking anything. But the smell is everywhere. Is it... is it coming from the other students? You really hope not. But someone walks right past you and the smell is overpowering. And //enticing//. You sit down, close your eyes, and try to shove your fingers up your nose to block the smell. It's probably not a good look. But it's also not really helping. You can still smell it. It's getting harder to resist. You start to feel dizzy. And your skin is starting to itch. [[Fight it! Students are friends, not food!->N3, Animal, Buffet]](if: $punctuality >= 0)[(goto: "N3, Animal, Punctual")]<!--[[N3, Animal, Punctual]]-->You head outside to try to find building six. But all you can think about is eating. And you can smell meat //everywhere//. But nobody's having a barbecue right now. <span class="font75">(It's possible they heard about your behaviour earlier)</span> As you venture further out into the crowds of people milling around you start to get dizzy. And your skin is starting to itch. You lick your lips. People noticed that, and they back away slightly. You don't want that, because... are they actually starting to look tasty? You look at these people and... you want to eat them. No, that can't be right, can it? ''Can it?'' [[I hope something happens before this becomes an all you can eat student buffet->N3, Animal, Buffet]]Resisting the urge to get distracted on the way (which is hard, everyone out there //smells// pretty great... you may have licked your lips several times along the way), you make it to the room where Jessie is waiting to talk to you. She seems to be trying to keep her distance from you. With how you've been feeling today, you can't really blame her. She shuts the door quietly and begins to talk. "So, um, you know how I said I was trying to see if people still had the genetic instinct of other animals? It turns out we, um, do. But I didn't know it would come out like this! I heard what you've been getting up to today. Um, sorry about that." Her face droops. You can't help but feel a little sorry for her. "It's alright," you say, "not your fault. Well, it is, technically, but you didn't mean for this ''this'' to happen so I forgive you." Her face seems to light up a bit. "The real question is," you continue, "can you fix it?" "I, um, I think so" she replies. Not the most hopeful thing you've ever heard, but better than a no. "So, should we, um, start now?" [[Let this girl who messed you up in the first place have another crack at it->N3, Animal, Punctual, p2]]You lie down. Your start hyperventilating. Nothing's helping. And people are starting to stare. You can fix that though. You look at them and feel your lips curl into a smile. They notice, and they back away a little bit. They look scared. <span class="font125">***Good***</span>. The adrenaline makes them extra tasty. Wait, did you just think that? It's too late now. You feel your teeth growing, and becoming sharper. And you seem to have slightly more body hair than usual. And you're on all fours, rushing towards your fellow students, so that you may sink your teeth (which now probably include fangs) into them. You reach a couple of them. Mmm, human flesh. You try not to eat too much, considering how much fatty tissue have these days, but at least it makes nice and soft, and just come straight off the bone. You help yourself to a couple of people and then lose track of time while you pick the bones clean. Now you can see something in the distance. An orange glow. But it smells like... //people//. You want a piece (or several) of this. But as you get close, you see there's a lot of them. And they have torches. On fire. That's probably a bit much for you to handle right now. As you run from the angry mob, you can hear the screaming. You can't make out what they're saying... you're concerning yourself more with the sound of the flaming torches. Where did they get those, anyway? What is this, Victorian England? Good thing you're so quick though, you lose them pretty quickly. You should have been looking where you were going though. <span class="font125">''"FREEZE!"''</span> someone yells. You turn around. He's holding a shotgun, so you should probably do what he says. [[Sit, like a good dog->N3, Animal, Show]]It's been a couple of months. Things have changed for you a bit. For example, did you know that werewolves aren't considered people, so you don't have human rights? Apparently that means the police are allowed to sell you to a circus. You tried to show them your //appreciation// for this, and even managed to nip a couple of them in the leg, but the taser put a stop to that fairly quickly. They got tetanus shots, you got 50,000 volts. Seemed like a fair trade. You spend plenty of time in your cage these days. It's not all bloodthirsty rage, there's plenty of times you're human and you get a chance to think about what happened. Maybe if you'd had better self control you could have made it back to Jessie. Maybe she could have helped you. Maybe you shouldn't have gone drudging up memories of your primal instinct. It's a bit late for that now. Get ready for the show, though. Every night (and weekends) they wheel your cage into the big top. And if you don't put on a good show, that's when they encourage people to throw popcorn at you. That always makes you angry. (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->You're getting very sleepy. This time you dream of... an angry mob? What does this mean? They're not even chasing slightly beast-like you, they're chasing regular you. You don't really have any choice but to run. You can hear them screaming. But it sounds like some nonsense language. Plus, somehow they have torches (as in, on fire) and those are pretty loud. And probably a bit more concerning than just some people who want to yell at you. You can't run very fast though, on only two legs. And just as they catch you... You wake up. Jessie is standing over you. You should probably ask her about that dream. "How'd it go?" you ask. "Um, not perfect, but pretty good." she replies. She seems to notice the look of worry on your face. "Sorry, but once it comes to the, um, surface, you can't really bury it completely again." she explains as valiantly as she can. This seems like as good a time as any to ask about your dream. "I dreamed I was being chased by an angry mob... what's that supposed to mean, anyway?" you ask. "I don't know, and given what's happened, it's probably better not to try and investigate." You can't deny that she has a point, but now you have to ask: "So what, now I can't go outside without wanting to eat everyone?" She brightens up a bit - "Oh! You should, um, like still feel the urges, but, you should um, be able to control them." Better than nothing, you guess. Since she doesn't seem to have anything more to say you leave and start heading back to your room. She was right: the people do look like they might taste good. But you're not exactly salivating uncontrollably just by being around them. You make it back to your room without incident, and because you don't really have anything better to do, you open the window and howl at the moon. It's not that you couldn't help yourself, but sometimes you've got to let yourself have a bit of fun, right? (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->As you enter the classroom, you realise something. You hate all these people. What have they ever done for you? Laughing at you when you stick your hand up and get a question wrong is more something //to// you than //for// you. If they were so smart, they should have offered to answer it. Not to mention how on every group project, you have to do all the work, while they just laze around insist their name goes first. Wouldn't it be cool if a meteor hit this classroom then? While you're out getting a drink or something, obviously, but as long as you're not there, wouldn't that be cool? Oh, look, the teacher is saying something to you now. He seems to have a problem with how you've just been standing in the doorway for the past three minutes. Who made him boss of whether you had to stand up or sit down? Now he's saying that if you're so eager to stand up, would you please hand out these assignment sheets. Well of course you would. You walk down to the front, grab the stack, rip all the paper into tiny pieces, and throw them in the air. Done! You never said you were going to hand them out in one piece. So now you're in the staff room. Apparently the offices are being recarpeted, or something. You never had a problem with the offices, just the people in them. You're trying your best to ignore them, but every time they say the word "expulsion" they seem to say it a bit louder. It's getting harder to ignore. That's fine, though, if they don't want you there, you're happy not to be there. You get up and leave while the teacher is in the middle of a sentence (with several other teachers looking on) and head outside. Ah, the campus logo, made out of flowers. It's their prize centrepiece in the garden. It hasn't rained in a while though, those flowers must be getting thirsty. [[You know what to do.->M3, Maudlin, Garden]]You don't really want to be here. If you'd had to wait for an appointment or something, you probably would have just given up. But you only had to explain to the receptionist the epiphany you just had she bumped everyone else's appointments to make room for you right this second. You didn't realise how much a stereotype a shrink's office actually is. There's the window with a desk in front of it, the wall of bookcases filled with books (which probably haven't been touched since they were put there), the leather couch and the chair for the doctor to sit in. As you explain how you were feeling (or not really feeling, for other people) earlier, the doctor takes a lot of notes. Apparently you should imagine yourself being chased by an angry mob, torches blazing, with you running from them as fast possible, and listening to what they're screaming at you. He says this is because you seem to think the whole world is against you, and you should figure out why. Yeah right. An angry mob with torches? What is this, Victorian England? Now comes the bad news: he thinks he can help you. Well that's the good news. The alright news is that he wants to see you once a week to do it. The bad news is that he expects you to pay for it. At the end of your first session, he makes sure to remind you that this all could have been avoided if you didn't give into your rage online. You just wish he didn't have to say it on such a way that increased your rage at him, offline. (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->There really is only one thing ''to'' do here. You pull down your pants, face the garden and start to water it. You're doing them a service. A lot of people don't seem to appreciate it though. There's a bunch of security guards at the front of a large group of people who can only laughably be called a "mob". As you run from the angry mob (who knows what they'd expect you to do if they catch up), you can hear the screaming. It's actually pretty funny, like you care what they have to say. The lit torches they keep throwing at you are slightly more of a worry, but apparently even with a few dozen people in the group, none of them know how to aim. Where did they get those torches, anyway? What is this, Victorian England? The security guards finally tackle you, but they get a bit wet in the process. You never did pull your pants back up. At least you get the last laugh. At least now that you've been banned for campus grounds, you have plenty of time to comment on YouTube videos. You have nothing but time for it, in fact. That's good. The school no longer wants you, but you've still got plenty of people to school. At least as long as your neighbour's WiFi will reach into your parents' basement. (display: "The End")<!--[[The End]]-->