Sketches — Lost Time // Brutalism

It’s customary for us sky-dwellers to bring a narrator along for our journeys to the ground, and put our stories up for sale underground.

When I say ‘underground’, I mean like the samizdat of the sky.

I’m sure you’re wondering what samizdat means.

It’s what underground literature was called in Soviet Russia. Most of our literature in the sky-world has been pushed underground.

It’s not by law or anything. The underground is the only place populated by people who care about out stories.

Sky-dwellers don’t care.

Ground-dwellers would have better things to read in a randomly selected archive or library.

So we’re consigned to an above-ground underground.

You’ve probably been wondering how I, Ms. Peacock, know you’re watching me.

First of all, it’s Akara. Ms. Peacock is what Grully called me.

Secondly, you followed me here.

I know you don’t remember, but you did.

I’m sorry things got a little out of hand, and I had to boot Grully.

You’re happy he’s gone. You don’t remember why, but trust me.

You can’t speak to me.

Let me rephrase… You could, but I wouldn’t be able to hear you. That’s not how this ‘time’ thing works.

YOU CAN’T BROADSMIT ON THE SAMIZDAT LINE WITHOUT A NARRATOR, <MS. PEACOCK>, YOU’VE BEEN WARNED ABOUT THIS BEFORE. THIS IS YOUR SECOND VIOLATION. DEAR VIEWER, <MS. PEACOCK> IS A REPEAT OFFENDER AND THIS PORTION OF HER ‘SMIT HAS BEEN DELIBERATELY REMOVED TO DISSUADE REPEATED RULE-BREAKING.

Ms. Peacock, I did tell you I need to be here with you.

Yes, Grully.

We will be monitored henceforth. So please do not interact with me for the rest of our journey. Pretend I’m not here.If you break the rules again, you will be reported to the Party Police, and I wouldn’t like that. I like you, Ms. Peacock. I wouldn’t like to see you dealing with the likes of the Party Police.

(…)

Ms. Peacock?

I thought I was to pretend you didn’t exist?

Yes.

Hi, dear reader. I apologise for the confusion.

Let’s start afresh.

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