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“This place is an echo chamber. The more we drink, the drunker the air gets!” Tip Nick shouted as they entered. 

 

The air was already decidedly drunk. Distances bulged and folded and sometimes popped. Conversations were kept short but animated as one could be moved around the room at the air’s whim.  

Fractal Fred had now become quite one dimensional and talked only about his duck collection. This was a conversation that became stale quickly in the slowest of breezes, but here it was quite unacceptable. He was bounced around the room like a Ping-Pong ball and left a trail of “A Mallard Duck! A Bufflehead Duck!” in his wake, which started an animated and unrelated game of Duck Dusk Dust. 

 

A large caterpillar walked up to her and inspected her head to toe. “Huuuuuuu-man. I know who you are! I have met one of you before. Unimpressed!” 

“We are not all alike. And I am quite impressive! I made my bed two mornings in a row just last week!” she called, but the caterpillar had already been whisked away by the wind, so she set herself to the task of making good impressions with friendlier creatures. 

 

Luckily many others were nicer and taught her to play Habberslap. But by this time the air was not quite certain whether it was the air of now or the future. It was caught in a state of giddy anticipation that made it increasingly hard to ascertain whether one had scored or had only hoped to score.  

They left off the game and started to talk And How Did You Get Here? Which led her to find out about many creatures on their own different but exciting journeys. 

 

Suddenly the air buckled and plopped itself into four quadrants so it looked like she interacted with three of herselves through a mirror. Her other selves all seemed to have a good time, and their happiness echoed and amplified her own. 

 

“It is time to play Shots Across the Universe!” the call must have started somewhere, but it was in the back of so many minds it could have started anywhere.

 

It might have even emerged from the air itself. 

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Part 6 B of 11
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