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3mile Dawn Pt. 1 - Swingin'

Pivoting in his seat, LuSiD was critical of the scene at hand; The smokey noir of phosphorescent lights dimmed amongst a nicotine fog, and the sultry romp of revelers deep in a cocktail of conversation, flirtation, coercion, and libation. Cold winter nights beget warm rooms and warmer beds, and no one in this room was going to theirs alone. Had the woman in the maroon dress with those loud, bangled earrings not dropped her cigarette on his table, he wouldn’t have noticed the hand, the letter. The only visual trait to imprint, the only trail to follow, was that ring on his left index finger. The emerald at the center shined like a steel furnace coated in a coal-black visage. By the time LuSiD realized it, the letter was placed into his own hands. It was blank if but for a set of coordinates, a date, and a crude scribble; 3mile.

.....

3mile Dawn Pt. 2 - Concierge

   White tuffs cascading over frozen foliage, the scent of pine and dead bark. Low clouds were like a quilt covering the the hidden fjord, coating the landscape in a shadowless, gray expanse. LuSiD was trying to get a gauge for the situation, trying to determine if he'd reached the coordinates. The compass read clearly, the maps were up to date, and the only thing in his field of view was a mountain range stretching far higher than the misty ceiling. At an instant, a silent snowmobile rolled up and to his left, with a posh, peculiar captain. No words were traded, no glances exchanged. They rode towards the peak in total silence.

    Higher and higher still, the depth of the snow became an ocean swallowing the landscape. Entire elder trees sat buried in the powder up to their first branches. The gale whipped and stirred the bare limbs, shaking them free of their frozen dust, leaving a shroud of bleach-white film along the damp wood. LuSiD was wary of the ascent; though they had been moving for just a few minutes, each second brought about heightened anxiety. In the aftermath of their blind jaunt up towards the mountain peaks, a rustic cabin sat upon rare, flat earth.

    Warmth and security emulsified the air around this wooden hideaway, with a strangely familiar man in the doorway. LuSiD made no move to judgement, no twitch in deference to his suspicions. His spectral host made his introductions, dancing his fingers as he spoke, that all-to-recognizable emerald ring shining out from its jet black cage: “I am Lusidoro, and it is my utmost pleasure to welcome you to 3mile.”

3mile Dawn Pt. 3 - Gelato

    The situation was like some kind of fucked up projection out of LuSiD's own mind; Five of them total. Same height, same age, same hairline, same overworked brow. Completely different characters, but very much the same person. Introducing themselves with no fanfare and little affection, L-Bow, Kachow, and Loretta were a bedraggled bunch, a complete set of distorted caricatures of LuSiD's very identity. The focal point, though, was always Lusidoro, that emerald rock staring out from his hand like a coiled serpent waiting to bare its fangs.

    The spoils of 3 Mile kept the guests entertained, if only to a dubious extent. The plush, marshmallow world that was the surrounding mountain top would have surely made for a raucous occasion, if not for the mounting suspicions LuSiD was beginning to brood on. Everything was almost perfect, but some foreign tint to the air around Lusidoro, some permeable aura, kept LuSiD on constant guard.

    Winding corridors that seemed altogether too large to fit in such a small cabin were beset with lupine limestone fireplaces, flames constantly in flux. Blood red carpets stretched into blooded mahogany floors, and an innocuous, heart-shaped archway invited LuSiD and his doppelgangers into a posh, euclidean dining hall. As the troop of stalwart guests made their way to the available seats, the very atmosphere of the room began to shift in form and color, distorting and fractalizing to a point of visual whiplash and discord. Standing at the center, and always at the center, was Lusidoro.

3mile Dawn Pt. 4 - Lost in the Woods

 There was absolutely no denying the growing disparity; Lusidoro was, without question, the most dangerous man LuSiD had ever encountered. In a fit of pique, he regaled a tale of lonesome winter trails, footpaths through the mountain ranges. “A view for the ages”, as Lusidoro so eloquently phrased it. The trio of LuSiD look-alikes were swayed by this faux-conquistador's skewed sonnet of visual bounties, and eschewed caution like ragdolls falling from their cozy nooks. LuSiD found himself less than enthused.

   Hours must have passed by the time LuSiD realized the imminent danger, but time was by and large irrelevant at this point, this fucked up juncture of confusion and instinct. First Kachow was gone in a flash. Lusidoro's laugh was the din of bloodlust, the shimmer and shine of his emerald ring being the only sure sign he was even there, shrouded as he must have been in the powder and foliage of this brewing, frozen hell. L-Bow disappeared next, leaving no trace other than one last bark out into the howling depths of this blood-soaked mountain range. Loretta was desperate for survival at this point, but found that desperation cut short in a moment's notice; a crunch, a snap, and then silence. Now only LuSiD remained, and the world around him began to ungulate violently, the very fabric of his vision being torn asunder by immeasurable psychedelia.

   A void. Jet black, if not for the still point of awareness floating within it. LuSiD was nothing, no corporeal mass or matter. He was an idea, and perhaps had always been just an idea. 3 Mile was but the faintest fragment of imagination, a momentary stop-gap between then and now. Kachow? A lie. Loretta? A lie. L-Bow? A goddamn lie

….Lusidoro….the greatest lie of them all.

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Written by Pasquale Zinna