The Outside
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Meta Wonderrat stood on the large tower of the burned city. He was free, even if ever so unstable. He had made it, he was out of the archive. He overlooked the burned city. "Too bad. My ticket out fell into this time. So that I can not be certain that I am actually free."

This was a similar situation as that time the archive was out of the archive, the hat-move.

Meta reached up to his white cylinder and tipped his hat as if acknowledging someone passing by. "There is so much I could do while no one is around to stop me." Meta knew that his time outside of the archive was still not set to permanent. Every day could be the last one before he was dragged down again, by forces outside of his control.

He was never able to see himself as all-powerful. He knew of the whims of higher powers that could strike him down at any moment. Nothing like the puppets on this plane could muster against him.

Meta walked down the stairs into the scarred skyscraper. Here, on the last floor under the roof he had set up a little workshop. He went over to a pile of faceless puppets, grabbed one and started to transform it. First he placed the puppet on a sheet of paper and looked at it closer. "Who are you and why should I care?"

On the sheet under the puppet words formed. "Vice Colonel Hella Everglade. I am currently observing you through the almost closed door."

Meta chuckled. "Why are you there?"

"We found documents within the archive that linked you to this place. We had it under observation ever since. I was in the room when my alarm was triggered. I went through the door just as you came down the stairs."

The puppet had changed. It now resembled a faceless woman in combat gear, armed with an assault riffle. The puppet had long blond hair that escaped a black helmet and flowed down to her shoulders.

"How do you currently feel?" Meta grabbed the puppet and lifted it of the piece of paper.

"I am scared. I know I have nothing to defend myself and if I let go of the door it will creak open, giving my position away. There is a monster right in front of me. I am not supposed to be this close." The text on the page was still expanding.

"What do you think will happen now and why do you think that?" Meta lifted the puppet up over his head. It now had the terrified face of a woman in here early twenties.

"I will die now. The creature knows that I am here. It seems to have made a puppet of me."

"Correct." Meta opened his mouth and revealed the inside of his throat, a labyrinth of red hot glowing gears. Meta dropped the puppet into his throat where the hot gears instantly got to work to crush and burn the puppet.

Two loud screamed echoed through the room. One had come out of Meta's throat and was silenced the moment Meta closed his mouth, the other scream came from one of the doors that lead out of the room.

Meta went over to the door and opened it. There on the ground, wiggling and screaming laid Vice Colonel Hella Everglade. Her body was covered in square shaped bruises and burn marks. Meta looked down as she was torn to pieces before his feet. Her body turning into a cooking, garbled mess, which was unrecognizable as a person.

"Sorry, that you happened to catch me in a creative mood. Sorry, that your story was one of horror." Meta's voice was still uncaring. There was not a hint of regret in his voice. Meta lend down to the still continuous pile on the floor, his red tie just sticking to his white suit as if sowed on. "I do not care for puppets. You exist to demonstrate a point." The pile on the floor lead out a garbled noise of pain. "From where you are it must look like a tragedy. Just bad luck. A meaningless death." Meta went down into a squad and looked into what remained of the face of Hella Everglade. "But to me, you existed just for this fate. You fulfilled your purpose for existing and gave me a good 10 minutes of entertainment and helped me to get a point across."

Meta stood up and turned to go. "You have my thanks for that, Hella Everglade." Meta walked over to his workbench and pocketed the piece of paper. He than walked out of the room and the Insurgency once again lost his signal.


The remains of Hella Everglade were recovered 20 minutes later, after a recovery team entered the building following the alarm. Her body seemed to be fully intact. She seemed to have died leaning against the door to an empty room. The autopsy revealed that she had suffered some form of heatstroke, in combination with several bludgeoning wounds. In her pocket the Insurgency found a note in her own handwriting.

"Thanks for the fun." Under the sentence she had drawn a cylinder hat, barring the number 6 on its side.

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