Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Skeptic-On-Duty of a Decaying World

Man starts over again everyday, in spite of all he knows, against all he knows.

It's time. It's time to tell the truth.

Peri has fallen asleep on the couch. She's been watching over me like a mother hen these past few weeks. I didn't realize just how much she cared about others until she cared about me. She cares more than she realizes. And yet, I write this in secret. Tom O'Bedlam is sitting in the corner, grinning at me like some sort of ghastly specter, but I know he will not wake her. Not when I leave.

So much has happened this past week. This past month. So many have died. And past villains seem to have returned. The pendulum of life has tipped and we seem to be entering a time when everything goes wrong. When we are powerless and trapped.

And I am not blameless. My hands are not bloodless.

I have never revealed where the name of "Skeptic" came from. It was a nickname, given to me by the Panopticon. Back when they were just a think tank. Back when I worked for them.

I was there, when we were hired to study the runners and the proxies. The others, upon hearing about the Slender Man, scoffed in disbelief. I, on the other hand, knew the truth. I tried to convince them of it, but they called me "Skeptic," a reversal of my role.

And then they saw him and they despaired. And I did something foolish. I did something stupid. I proposed the idea of a counter-meme.

They took to it instantly. How else to fight a meme-complex but with a counter-meme? I knew the truth, but I wanted to keep them sane. I didn't realize how bad I was making things. Memes were proposed and discarded. I tried to minimize the damage, but already it was spinning out of my control.

My last proposal was an attempt to get them to fight the Slender Man. To get them to war with him.

The invincible summer. That was my counter-meme. That was my idea.

They rejected it and replaced it with their own. With the "best of all possible worlds." With Brazil and Brave New World and 1984.

I am sorry, Adam Krug. I am sorry, Proxiehunter. I am sorry for all future victims of my mistakes.

And now? Now I have somehow attracted the attention of the Plague Doctor. The Beak Doctor, the spreader of disease, and his servants are after me. And if I stay here, I know Peri will continue to care and protect me. And for that, she will suffer at his hands. And I cannot abide that.

So I am running. I'm running away and leaving this blog for Peri and Tom to continue. I'm going to go where the damage from my death will be minimal. Where the Slender Man or the Plague Doctor can take me without anyone else dying by my side. Because I am going to die. The only questions are where and when.

I am leaving the war for you to fight. Even if it is futile, you must not give up. You must push the rock up the hill, even knowing that it will fall. When we push the rock, knowing that it is futile and still pushing, that is when we know we are human.

There is no fate that can not be surmounted by scorn. 
If the descent is thus sometimes performed in sorrow, it can also take place in joy. This word is not too much. Again I fancy Sisyphus returning toward his rock, and the sorrow was in the beginning.

Signing out for the last time,

Jack "The Skeptic" Castel


  1. You Skeptic, out of everyone who fucked up life for scores of Runners and civilians I forgive. Hell, when you saw what you'd done you didn't whine about how you had no choice you tried to fucking FIX it.

    I get the feeling you're about to do something stupid. Probably the same thing I'd do if I thought I were going to die or turn soon.

    If I'm right about that take as many as them with you as you can.

  2. I don't want you to go skeptic, but i know no one can stop you.

    Except maybe Peri. She sounds like she's never gonna let you go. Not without a fight.

  3. But I just started reading this blog. Darn.

  4. Ahhhh, Booo, I may not have liked your war, but I respected you, don't kill yourself like an idiot, and we've all done terrible things in our time, it's not your fault your creative weapon was turned destructive.

  5. And all the little pieces fall into place... I've always hated it when I saw a puzzle and knew in the back of my mind that the answer was right in front of me, but could never put it all together until it was too late. We should have seen this coming, shouldn't we?

    But I'd agree, you're not a bad person. You did the best you could under the circumstances presented you.

    Further, to your new problems... If recent reports are true, I don't the Good Doctor is going to be on your ass as quickly as you're suggesting. If you think you've got to run and hide, then do so. A guy as smart as you should be more than capable of fighting off a couple of Oathbreakers every now and again. But keep fighting. Keep. Fighting.

  6. *Insert typical good luck/don't give up statement here*

    Ah. And don't do anything stupid. One more soldier for the war, amIrite?

    Until the next time.

  7. I've wondered why you focused only on the one and not the others. I hope to hear good news of your final moments. Hope the beak gets you and not The Tall one. Much more amusing that way.

  8. Counter-Meme? Oh, the ideas you people get are hilarious!