Put the Skeletons Back in the Closet and Lock the Door

March 21, 2011

Despite how anxious I was, I was forced to wait until we had been served a fantastic array of food before Elcore would explain what he knew about this secret past of mine. The meal was very meat heavy, complete with giant slabs of steak that came from animals whose origin I could only guess at. I was too agitated to eat much, but took a token bite and washed it down with a gulp of spiced mead.

The meal had been served by what could be best described as long limbed and well muscles Valkeries. Each was covered with silver scaled armor and multiple weapons. Long braids of golden hair hung down their backs, exposing their perfect faces. I barely noticed them; while Ethan gave any that came within ten feet of him what I assumed was his attempt at a charming smile.

After the women, save Hannah, had departed, I addressed our host. “Alright, we have our meal, could you now let me in on this important information that you have been having such trouble reveling to me?”

Elcore weaved his gloved fingers together. Red eyes moved behind an even redder mask as he addressed me. “Have you been experiencing any strange dreams, which take place on even stranger worlds? Dreams where you are still yourself, but you are living a life completely different to you.”

I paused for a moment. “Yes, I suppose I have. But, I’ve been so busy lately that I can’t afford to give them much thought. I just figured that the stress I’m forced to endure, while I’m trying to save the world every other flipping week, is just getting to me.”

“Interesting. Are there any that stick out or that you have had more than once?”

“Well there is this one where I’m working with a very powerful group of Stalwarts. Marco, Jerome, Bella, Loni and even my friend Phillip. Their world is so messed up it makes this one look like a Sunday school field trip.”

“Phillip. Well that isn’t surprising. He’s more common that even you are.”

I clutched at my steak knife, trying to keep control, and when I continued it was through gritted teeth. “Just spit out whatever you are trying to say and what does this have to do with my buddy, Phillip?”

Elcore took a moment. “This isn’t the easiest subject to discuss and I doubt you are going to like what I have to tell you.” I just glared. “Very well, I’ll start by saying those Stalwarts in the dream you discussed are very real. In fact, I have met them. I have met your other incarnation as well.”


“Yes, yours Phillip’s, and even Ethan’s.”

“What, me? What do I have to do with all this?”

I waved Ethan to be silent. “Go on.”

Thick treads of gray smoke curled over the table, moving in odd patterns even though the air was still. “You have fought a Vile Darken, right?”

“I heard Vincent Drake use that name for himself. If I can ever put this current BS behind me, I hope to head back up to Idaho and finish what I already started there.”

“As you should, but things are far more complication than you believe.” He sighed. “There was an item. One that never should have been allowed into the hands of men. An item more powerful than the Gods themselves. When this item was used, Drake was somehow able to send an incarnation of himself onto every planet, on every plane. Some even believe he might exist in different realms throughout the timescape as well. This naturally drove him mad and Vincent Drake became Vile Darken.”

“Naturally. But what does this have to do with me?”

“Many believe that when this spell, this scroll, was initially used anyone located near where it was cast had their incarnations spread through the multi-verse as well. You Jack are one of these people.”

My knife slipped through my fingers and clattered against the plate. “Are you saying I’m not even me? That I don’t exist?”

“No, not at all. You have a history, a past a real as anyone’s on your world. Where you differ from the man across the street is that you also have a similar person living on other worlds as well. On some worlds you are still a bouncer and know nothing beyond your mundane life, while on others you are far more experienced and powerful that the man I see before me.”

“This is a lot to take in.”

“You’re telling me,” Ethan gulped. Hannah gently touched my arm under the table

“What would happen if I were to see another me?”

“We aren’t sure, but I wouldn’t suggest you try it.”

 “I have more questions for you, but I think I’ll need another drink first.”

Want to get in on how Jack began his adventures? Check it out here!

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