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There is one dream I often have, a pale, colorless memory of a time long gone. Pooh, reaching out, morose, I smile, entreating: “Pooh, promise me you won’t forget about me, ever. Not even when I’m a hundred.” He promises. Then, looking into his eyes, I ask “whatever happens, you will understand, won’t you?”. “Understand what?” he asks, and I am unable to reply. For, as a six year old, I had no grasp of the enormity of what I was asking. And now, dreaming, so many years later, I know that no one, let alone a toy bear, could have ever kept that promise.

I am not yet a hundred, but I know that no one else remembers the boy I once was. A part of that boy had died that day upon leaving the enchanted forest – the rest of him had died eleven years later, the year when everything changed, when I had first killed a man. He stood in front of me, paralyzed with fear, the din of battle surrounding us, and I shot him in the head. Under no instructions, feelings of real malice. I had no idea why I had done it, except that the color of his uniform indicated that he was the enemy. Above, scavenger birds were already circling, darkening the sky.

When the war was over, I did not return home. Reaching everywhere were armies, recruiters demanding survivors. I traveled around the world, fighting where I could, for whomever offered the greatest rewards. Never caring what the cause was, usually not bothering to ask. Those that offered me the most, I called master. The next month, when the tables turned, I called them enemy. I had forgotten all about the young boy I once was, the friends I once had. I had forgotten what a friend was.

Soon, I could no longer tell one army apart from the other. The colors of flags and uniforms all faded and vanished, mingling into each other. Slowly, howling angry defiance, only war survived. For me, caught forever in the shadows, not even black and white had any meaning any more.

It was not that I was happy with my lifestyle. Each night, every morning, I expected salvation. But I met no saviors, only enemies, and I treated them no differently than I had treated that first one years before.

Eventually, I grew to be quite wealthy, and the risk started outweighing the benefit. No longer a young man, I sought to return to my country of birth, and try to rebuild the sort of life I was supposed to have. I had moved here, to this Estate, hoping to attain some peace, living my life in whatever comfort my ill-gotten gains could afford me. Not knowing If I could ever succeed.

Not expecting much, every second I suffered. It was then that I realized that I had a nemesis. A true enemy, not one assigned to me by a stack of crumpled bills. Similar to Poe’s Raven, he had come to remind me of that which I had forgotten, and could nevermore attain. I knew who he was, and why he had come. He had come because he promised to remember me, promised to follow me anywhere. Promised to understand. He had come to remind me that wherever I go, whatever happens to me on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the Forest a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.

And I do not know if I can face this knowledge.

Christopher Robin
October 19--, Wednesday
The Estate

Scenario

Your character is the Mercenary.

Your character lives at number 2, Hook Lane. This is actually a corner block. The Mercenary lives on the corner of Bridge Rd and Hook Lane.

At this point, Bridge Rd runs east-west. To the east it crosses the river again (the 2nd bridge on Bridge rd).

None of the Mercenary's neighbours are known yet, though three of them soon will be. The character across Bridge Rd from the Mercenary is one of these three, the Eco-Terrorist!

Across the lane and north one house is the Linguist. Directly across the lane (at number 1) is the Hook Lane Video Store, selling and renting the latest and greatest in audio-visual pleasures.