autumnthered: She has an old 69’ charger project thatshe puts her excess money and time into. it was a frame to start, so its been a long process.
anastasianikolina: Jacob likes to help with that, though he needs instruction. Leah likes to hang out with you both while you work on it.
autumnthered: Shes always been too “manyly” for most men to want to date.
winning arm wrestling, or other such showmanship challanges
not aware enough torealize that shes screwing herself in the end by being too stubborn to not be so showey
Her father and her have an annual hunting trip, and thats one of the few times she uses weapons openly.
Her knife and multitool are for function, the pepper spray is to keep Jack happy
autumnthered: she doesn’t even know where in her room her carry licence is.
(also dont eat the java ice cream i forgot)
anastasianikolina: (I’m not going to. You also have an RC here in the fridge)
Your dad’s shop opens each day at 7 am. He’s always been an early riser. He doesn’t expect you there until after noon, though. He keeps your mornings open so you can eventually go to school.
Dylan is supposed to come in at 9 … but usually comes in a few minutes late.
He’s the only son of your mom’s best friend from high school.
Your dad takes the weekends off. He likes going into the hills and fishing in the local creeks and also works on things around the house. In the afternoons and evenings, he reads in his favorite chair and relaxes. He’s not a computer person.
He likes to go to dinner with you each week. He’s got a handful of favorite little restaurants around Flagstaff that he likes.
autumnthered: I am all for “dad-time”
anastasianikolina: He can be pretty soft spoken sometimes, a gentle heart, but he’s got no issues using fists to protect as well as guns. He’s old fashioned. He opens door for you, expects you to be respectful of your elders, and has a hard time talking about his feelings
He’s a simple sort of guy. But his reading material is deep. Thoraeu, Teddy Roosevelt, Walden.
We start in September. It’s the first day of fall, just starting to creep up to the colder months.
autumnthered: (I think im going to buy a tablet for cheyennes Bday)
Hence my coat in my equipment
anastasianikolina: (She’d be able to use it to run DMing. Stu’s was about $200. Mine and mom’s is about $150)
what im looking at
i want it to be fast enough to cope with being used. cheap nough.
anastasianikolina: Mine works very well for my games, my DMing, and everything I’ve put it through)
autumnthered: the samsung nook?
anastasianikolina: Yeah. Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook)
autumnthered: ALright, didn’t mean to pause you
anastasianikolina: (hehe, you’re cool)
It’s after work. Jacob texts you that he’s thinking about going to a play at the college that evening and wants to know if you and Leah want to go, too. Leah hasn’t answered yet.
autumnthered: Text back “What play?”
anastasianikolina: (Good question…)
anastasianikolina: "it’s actually rehersals. Not the final play “Comedy of Errors” he types back.
autumnthered: “Never heard of it. okay”
anastasianikolina: “I think it’s shakespeare.”
“they’re rehearsing at 7. I can pick you up if your charger isn’t working right now”
“Making fun of my baby wont get me to come”
anastasianikolina: “Hey. It’s a valid response. Sometimes your baby doesn’t cooperate with you.”
autumnthered: “Well until I get the wiring done. its not moving at all”
anastasianikolina: “I rest my case. You eat yet?”
autumnthered: The pit of my stomach is a rumbling chaos"
(For dylan, looked up “Annoying names” on google)
anastasianikolina: (Aw, haha)
“haha, alright. Tacos?)
autumnthered: “Why are you texting and not getting my ass to tacos”
anastasianikolina: “If I told you I’m texting and driving, would I get dead arm?”
autumnthered: “Its highly likely”
anastasianikolina: “Then i’m still trying to find my pants.”
He’s a terribly liar.
“You should call Leah.”
autumnthered: “i will”
i call her
anastasianikolina: (brb, have to take out the pooch)
She answers on the second ring, “Hey. What’s up?”
autumnthered: are you ready to go?"
anastasianikolina: “Almost. Am I meeting you guys at your place?”
anastasianikolina: “Alright. I’m leaving now. Did I leave my sweater there?” She’s usually the type to remember exactly where everything is. She left it on your chair in your room.
“It’s the red one.”
autumnthered: “Yes, did you want it?”
anastasianikolina: “Yeah. I can grab it when I get there.”
“I don’t want to bring another one if that one’s there.”
autumnthered: I put on my jacket.
anastasianikolina: “I’m leaving now.”
autumnthered: something like that
and i grab hers and sit on the porch
anastasianikolina: Do you tell your dad you’re heading out?
autumnthered: What is he doing?
anastasianikolina: He’s reading Robert Frost.
In his favorite chair with a spike hot chocolate next to him on the table.
autumnthered: I go in and wait
anastasianikolina: He looks up, “What’s up?”
FYI, his nicknames for you are pumpkin, which is shortens to punk when you’re being a brat.
autumnthered: “Im going out with Leah and Jacob. Im not going to be here for food so…youll have to call in the delivery tonight yourself”
anastasianikolina: He chuckles, “Damn. I hate that phone.” You know he’s being sarcastic.
“You taking your cell phone and pepper spray?”
autumnthered: I roll my eyes"No?"
anastasianikolina: “Go get ‘um. Who’s driving?”
autumnthered: I Guess its about time for that, im 24 speech again Dad"
anastasianikolina: “I’m serious. At least take your phone. You don’t know what could happen.” Your mom was hit by a drunk driver in 1999, btw. He’s been pretty much insufferably protective since.
(did you forget to hit enter because it’s showing you’re still typing)
anastasianikolina: Your reply)
autumnthered: anastasianikolina: “I’m serious. At least take your phone. You don’t know what could happen.” Your mom was hit by a drunk driver in 1999, btw. He’s been pretty much insufferably protective since.
autumnthered: “I have my phone, my knife, my pepper spray. Im giving you a hard time and Jacob is driving”
anastasianikolina: (I didn’t see that. But Netflix is also being a bitch.) He nods. "Alright. If something comes up, call me. But have fun.
You hear a knock on the door.
autumnthered: “I will dad, love you”
I head for the door
anastasianikolina: “Love you, too, Punk.”
autumnthered: Im guessing Leah is here?
anastasianikolina: Yeah, when you open the door, she’s there, and she smiles. She’s got her hair pulled up and huge hoop earrings in, and great make up, like usual.
She’s got a nice little outfit on, and a purse over one arm. “Hey, you. We waiting on Jacob still?”
autumnthered: Yes" hand her her coat
anastasianikolina: She grins, “Thanks.” Roll Perc.
anastasianikolina: You see headlights pull onto your street, and then Jacob’s Camry pulls up.
He pulls up and into the driveway and turns off the car before getting out. He’s got his hair back in a braid. Leah is jealous of his hair.
anastasianikolina: So, you’d been picked up by Jacob and have Leah along for the ride and you’re headed to Northern State University to see “A Comedy of Errors” rehersals.
anastasianikolina: You get to the college, and the sun is setting. The rehearsals are taking place in the older theatre, not the new one that’s used for performances. Jacob is talking about how he’s been asked to help with the sets, since he didn’t get the audition to get a part.
He pulls in and parks, and you realize you’ve passed by quite a few of the dorms.
autumnthered: I get out
anastasianikolina: He leads you and Leah to the building and opens the door. It’s chilly outside.
Leah thanks him and heads in.
(dice roller on your phone?)
I bring dice with me. But I haven’t transferred my character to my phone yet
anastasianikolina: aw. blind roll?
autumnthered: I sent you my sheet
anastasianikolina: Yes.) You see someone standing to the side of one of the buildings, smoking.
When you look in another direction and back, he’s gone.
autumnthered: Do either of them smoke? Leah and Jacob.As in did he stay with it.And did she pick it up
Can I recall what they look like?
anastasianikolina: He did, and Jacob is standing next to you, holding open the door for you.
He doesn’t seem to have noticed, he’s greeting someone inside.
autumnthered: I’m going to have a cigarette first"
I say absently and walk that way
anastasianikolina: He nods. “Want company?”
You can tell he’s torn between joining you and smoozing with his drama buddies.
autumnthered: Go. Your needed inside"
anastasianikolina: “Alright. Don’t be too long.”
He heads in.
You saw the man about a building over.
autumnthered: I had That way. Pull out a cigarette.
anastasianikolina: The alleyway between two dorms is small, but doesn’t smell like an alleyway would in the city.
It’s colder here.
autumnthered: Stop to light the cigarette.
anastasianikolina: It’s eerily still. No wind. Silent.
I call into the alley
anastasianikolina: You don’t get a reply. You’re not sure why there isn’t even the smell of his smoke left behind for you to smell before you lit up.
autumnthered: Start walking into the alley
Pull my jacket tighter on me
anastasianikolina: You can feel the temperature drop more as you do. You can see your breath in between smokey exhalations.
You feel something tap on your shoulder from behind, and think it must be Jacob.
anastasianikolina: You don’t see anyone.
No doors to either side, either.
autumnthered: “Hey. What the Fuck?!”
anastasianikolina: You feel a slight rush of adrenaline at not being able to tell whether you were just touched by a friend or a stranger. You’ve known since you were about 14 that some people assume that you’re bait simply for being female. Creeps.
autumnthered: I look around
anastasianikolina: You don’t see anything, and you’re beginning to get a foreboding feeling.
(So, I’m officially allowed to tell you that Dwellable was bought by a company called HomeAway.)
autumnthered: Oh? And?
I start sucking my cigarette down and briskly walking back
anastasianikolina: (That’s why my job was dissolved. They only needed the developers and the app_)
(However, I got a random second “last paycheck” AND a portion from the sale)
(So they more than took care of me for what I provided)
You notice the air getting warmer once you leave the alley.
anastasianikolina: You happen to glance in the right area and see the dorm sign “North Morton Hall” (I got the college name wrong. It’s Northern Arizona University)
(So, let’s not game Friday night, but I can run mine Saturday, big group Sunday, and then Chey’s on Monday?)
autumnthered: I think that’ll work
Is that an important name to me?
anastasianikolina: (Sweet.) You finish your cigarette about the same time you get back to the theatre building.
The name isn’t important, but now you know where you were.
autumnthered: I head inside
anastasianikolina: You hear talking from the main room where the stage it.
autumnthered: Head that way.
anastasianikolina: The laughter and bragging feels like another world, and it’s contagious. The different spirit feels a lot more welcome to you.
autumnthered: Look for my two
anastasianikolina: You’re able to find them. Leah is smiling, huge. Her teeth are very perfect from her years in high school wearing braces. Jacob is noticeable next to her because of his hair.
autumnthered: I go to them
anastasianikolina: Leah sees you first, “Hey. They’re starting in, like, 15 minutes. Wanna get a soda with me?”
autumnthered: Do I ever"
I go to her
anastasianikolina: She laughs. “Come on. There’s a vending machine in the lobby.”
She begins leading the way.
autumnthered: I follow
anastasianikolina: “Jacob is so gushing over this play.” she looks amused. “I can’t wait for him to get into the company so he’ll get to act.”
She goes over to the Pepsi machine. “What do you want?”
autumnthered: Cherry. I agree. He’s funny sometimes"
anastasianikolina: She pays and punches the buttons for a diet Pepsi and a cherry Pepsi, and hands you yours when it comes out.
“Has he talked to you about what happened in California? He won’t tell me anything.”
autumnthered: Did he?
anastasianikolina: No. He hasn’t talked to anyone, that you know of.
autumnthered: He’s more hush hush than a government conspiracy."
“I know nothing.”I open mine and start drinking as I walk.
anastasianikolina: She walks back with you. “He’s been back almost a year.” She bemoans.
autumnthered: We’ll know when we need to know"
anastasianikolina: She nods, “How can you be so patient?”
You get back to the auditorium as the actors are getting on stage and the seats are filling.
The actors still have their scripts in hand, and their places are marked on the stage with masking tape.
autumnthered: Because I have a life that’s not his"i roll my eyes"busy enough trying to get my dad to lighten up and let me work"
anastasianikolina: “You know, most kids don’t WANT to work more. He’s paying for your rent and food.”
anastasianikolina: You were watching the dress rehersal. It’s amusing at the very least. The group putting on the show are enthusiastic and lively. Lots of drama jokes. It makes for a social evening.
Jacob gives you and Leah a ride back to your house, where Leah picks up her car to head home. Do you tell them about the smoking man you saw?
Not even once
anastasianikolina: Your dad is asleep in the chair, the television playing softly still.
The house is otherwise quiet.
autumnthered: I turn it off, and put a throw over him.
Head to my room.
turn on my laptop and go to the kitchen while it boots
anastasianikolina: He just got groceries earlier in the day, so you’re fully stocked in the few recipes the two of you know, and a plethora of snacking veggies and frozen foods alike.
autumnthered: I make a bologna and mustard sandwhich. and head back to my room with a cup of iced tea.
anastasianikolina: Your computer is all ready to go when you get there.
(Would you have any pets?)
autumnthered: umm. let me think real quick
autumnthered: Two. Reptiles, a bearded Dragon named Edward
and a Ball Python named Stheno
anastasianikolina: Stheno is curled up on his heat rock when you enter, but Edward runs to the edge of his tank to “ask” you for a treat, or even better, a cricket.
Your room is quiet, but comfortable. It’s chilly, and you realize the window’s cracked open, but it’s not too cold to be comfortable.
autumnthered: (sorry, helping chey with her character for your game)
I open the top and pet his head while i pull a cricket out.
anastasianikolina: (No worries. I’m browsing the internet and being amused)
When he catches sight, he turns his head to one side and tilts it slightly.
autumnthered: I drop it in and shut the cage. sit at my desk and put in my password
anastasianikolina: (If you bring vegetable oil in addition to beer, we can make the second box of brownies we have, too)
anastasianikolina: He finds it in record time and snatches it up.
autumnthered: We have a desert thing too
anastasianikolina: (Oh? Do tell. :) )
Once your computer is on?
autumnthered: Its cheesecake
autumnthered: I type in the name of the school, and add deaths to the search
anastasianikolina: You find quite a few interesting articles about students who’ve passed over the decades.
Many speculations on ghosts.
Articles about candlelight vigils.
autumnthered: i add the name of the building i saw. which i can’t find in the conversation history
anastasianikolina: North Moron Hall.
anastasianikolina: You find an article amongst the history of the building articles, that’s from the Arizona Daily Sun, back in 2001. It’s about NAU ghost stories, and it mentions that residency hall in the link description.
anastasianikolina: It talks about ghosts on campus, but specifically, a ghost named Kathy from Morton Hall.
autumnthered: was the figure a girl
anastasianikolina: Not that you saw. But it’s still interesting.
autumnthered: nothing fitting what i saw?
open the window a smidge more and light a ciggerette
anastasianikolina: Kathy’s parents are mentioned. And her story. She’s related to the man for whom the mountain nearby is named.
Nothing that you can see. Her name is Kathy Elden. The nearby mountain is Mt Elden
autumnthered: The name of the university with male ghost
anastasianikolina: You find a couple of hits, but nothing that seems as old as the guy you saw. He seemed middle aged.
If you happen to search her name, you find out that she’s descended from a city founder.
And there is drama in her family line.
autumnthered: look him up
anastasianikolina: John Elden was a founder of the city and had a sheep ranch at the base of the mountain. The first tragedy of his family starts with his own son, also named John.
autumnthered: info on him
anastasianikolina: A man came to water his mules from the ranch’s creek, and John Sr. wasn’t home. He became irate when John’s wife didn’t allow him access and shot and killed John Jr., who was six at the time. The elder John was crushed. And while his remaining daughters survived, he was never the same after losing his son.
This was in the late 1880s.
The father only lived another decade. It’s unmentioned what he died from.
His two daughters and his wife all survived him.
The daughters also settled in the area, marrying into upper middle class families.
Kathy, the ghost from the tale, attended the college in 1947. She was four generations removed from John. Her lineage traced back through her mother, grandmother, great grandmother, to her great great grandmother: John’s daughter.
The curse that seemed to haunt John appears to have carried on. You are able to find family tragedies in each generation. Ending with Kathy’s suicide with no remaining heir.
So, while Kathy isn’t who you saw, the family is steeped in creepiness.
autumnthered: turn away to keep smoking and clear my thoughts
anastasianikolina: John’s namesake mountain is within sight from your window. It’s uncanny.
Devil’s Chair, on Mt Elden, is a straight shot of a mile. If you drove there, though, the roundabout way takes 30 minutes to get there. But that mountain is the only neighbor you have to the north.
(brb, reply and I’ll reply when I return)
autumnthered: Turn back and close the computer windows.
Fucking weird" i finish my drink and sandwhich. snuff the ciggerette.
I head outside for fresh air
anastasianikolina: By this time, it’s nearly midnight. Only a few minutes away.
autumnthered: Hold myself and stare at the mountain
anastasianikolina: Roll Perception (Spot on those sheets)
anastasianikolina: Your thoughts are interrupted by a flicker of light on the side of the mountain. Something small.
anastasianikolina: It flickers, disappears, and there’s darkness.
Seconds pass, and then there’s another flicker in the same spot.
autumnthered: Head inside. Grab a flashlight and dad’s keys
and start going
The last image is the route you’d have to drive to get to where you’re seeing the flicker.
Do you leave a note or wake your dad?
autumnthered: I do not.
I see you knew i would go
anastasianikolina: You know things as a DM.
It’s a thing)
autumnthered: Yeah i know)
anastasianikolina: And if not, it’s there for exploration.)
autumnthered: My character personality is rash and impulsive, not thoughtfull
anastasianikolina: What is your dad’s vehicle?
1980 dodge pickup
anastasianikolina: Nice. Alright. It roars to life without a hitch. Your dad baby’s it.
It’s got 3/4 tank of gas.
The radio station is an oldies station.
autumnthered: Change it to something more manageable. and start driving said route
anastasianikolina: The truck doesn’t move quickly without there being a lot of power used. It’s not terribly aerodynamic.
autumnthered: Keep the window down to feel the cold air. when i get closer to the mountain, i turn the radio off
anastasianikolina: You have to circle around and approach Devil’s Chair from the north. You know at the peak of the crag that’s above that specific landmark there’s a parking lot and a hiking route starting post.
You also know you will shortly lose cell service.
autumnthered: Drive up and park in the lot
anastasianikolina: It’s so silent up here only the wind in the trees and brush confirms that you haven’t lost your sense of hearing. Below, to the south, lie the lights of Flagstaff, spread out in gorgeous form along the valley floor.
It’s much colder up there.
autumnthered: close my jacket and begin hiking
i dnt pull out the light just yet
its in my pocket
anastasianikolina: It’s a lucky break. The moon is full and the night is clear. Now that you’re on the mountain, it occurs to you how small of a chance you’ll have of finding this. It’s a massive searching ground.
autumnthered: i stop and look around
anastasianikolina: Roll Perc.
anastasianikolina: You don’t see the flicker at this point. Though, you suspect you can sort of tell the direction you think you saw it come from.
autumnthered: I go that way
anastasianikolina: Do you have survival?
autumnthered: THat i do
anastasianikolina: Alright. You’re able to make out the trail that you suspect goes to that direction, and you’re able to take it without losing your fotting.
The serenity of the night is relaxing.
autumnthered: I walk as quickly as i can see
anastasianikolina: Roll perception again.
anastasianikolina: You nearly jump when you see the flicker. It’s between trees, nearly 50 feet from you. Blue light that instantly disappears.
autumnthered: crouch down
anastasianikolina: You don’t hear anything. Just the wind. No people sounds. No animal sounds aside from the random bug that hasn’t figured out that it’s becoming too cold for them.
Call out, standing up"
anastasianikolina: You see the flicker again. Several times. You get a feeling of foreboding as the wind dies out.
autumnthered: Hey, who the hell are you!?"
What time tomorrow)
anastasianikolina: There’s no more flickering to be seen.
autumnthered: I start that way
PUll my knife