Jesus. Okay.

I don't know why I'm writing this. I think I'm the only person left that doesn't carve Viking runes onto every available surface and shoot didgeridoo noises out of my mouth instead of talking.

I guess I feel like I have to write this down because I'm pretty sure it's the end of the world, and it feels like somebody should be making the attempt to document it. Maybe I'm biased by a lifetime of doomsday scenario movies.

There hasn't been a lot of violence. I mean a lot (A LOT) of people died. Shitloads. But it wasn't, you know, like some kind of zombie apocalypse. The rune guys didn't do any killing or hurting, it was mostly normal people panicking and hurting each other. Oh man there were a lot of people sort of disappointed about that, and a lot more confused about it. The last news reports were pretty lackluster, actually. I wish I'd thought to save some of those before everything got purged.

Fuck.

I forget that whoever finds this won't have the benefit of context. Let me start from the beginning.

If what is happening is what I think it is, your names are Lif and Lifthrasir.

So, look around at the big pile of books and magazines that I put in with this. That's the best I can do for you, to describe what things used to be like. There were about 6 billion people, and we were all different shades of color everywhere between paper white and purple-black. We had all kinds of hair colors, and eye colors too. Nobody glowed blue. That wasn't normal.

There were thousands and thousands of different languages, too. People spoke all kinds of them. All I could find were a couple of books about French and Spanish, and English of course, this is written in English. So are all of the learning books, the children's books that I hope will teach you how to read this.

There were airplanes, machines that used a combustible fuel to power turbine engines, and Bernoulli's Principle, to fly around. Normal people can't fly. And cars, too, there were cars, there were all kinds and they also used combustible fuel to power an engine. There are pictures of all of this crap, and four or five dictionaries too, and I think an encyclopedia unless that was in the bag I had to throw at the Perthro guys in town to distract them.

There were governments and countries and politics. I'm giving this a huge gloss-over, because in the end none of that was really important. Governments didn't do shit about shit when it came down to it, because they were just people too. There's a, uh, Civics 101 textbook, and some Social Studies textbooks that will give you some basic understanding of how we used to govern ourselves. Don't worry too much about that I guess until later.

So, things were spinning along pretty smoothly for a couple of thousand years of humans. I think it was more like ten or fifteen thousand or something like that. The books will tell you more of what I haven't bothered to really learn.

In 2011 (the year this is being written), some really weird shit happened. Weirder than religion or cults or daytime television, because this was really happening, not just pretend.

Nobody found out for sure what the deal was, and I can't really ask now, because I don't speak didgeridoo, but basically, I'm pretty sure that some Norse gods showed up in Scandinavia.

Before I get any further, make sure you read about Ragnarok in the really big book called "NORSE MYTHOLOGY". In fact, make sure you understand everything in that book. I am pretty sure all of this (gods walking the Earth, transformed human thrall creatures destroying all traces of humanity) is supposed to be getting the place ready for that. I don't know how much you're going to understand about what's going on, because you'd have slept through all of this.

These gods showed up one day. Out of thin air, just appeared. Five of them. People say they appeared in a flash of lightning or something, but nobody really knows. That was probably just embellishment from fake eyewitnesses who wanted to get on TV.

People were pretty surprised at first. They were all these really huge dudes, like 10 feet tall, and they looked, well, like Norse gods. Huge guys, with all kind of armor and swords and shit. And at first they were sort of, you know, just standing around. Like for a week they just stood in this roundabout next to a big statue of some national hero, and kinda talked to each other. But it wasn't talking, it was those didgeridoo noises. They started getting international news coverage after a day or two. Some cops or gendarme or whatever they're called, had shown up to tell them to leave, but they just ignored the cops, and when the cops went to arrest them (how the fuck are you going to arrest a guy who's 10 feet tall!) the cops sort of bounced off of them.

I mean these guys, these gods, were just totally distanced from the fact that they'd have like 4 cops hanging off of their arms trying to drag them down. It got silly, you know? Like imagine a bunch of normal guys trying to wrestle the Incredible Hulk (he's in some of the little thin books, the ones with the big green guy on the front) while he's busy trying to read a train schedule, right? He just doesn't even notice them.

So after a week or whatever, this whole traffic circle has been closed off, the army has them surrounded, everyone's freaking the fuck out, and one of these god-guys turns and points his big meaty finger at a cop. The cop climbed up over the barricade (they showed this part on repeat about four thousand times on the news) and walked over, then the god-guy palmed the cop's face like a basketball. A bunch of people screamed and I guess they were afraid he was gonna crush the cop's head, but it was worse than that. He picked the cop up by his face, and then let him go. The cop guy floated about 10 inches off the ground, and then started glowing blue, and had some kind of symbol on his face that the news later found out was this Norse rune. It was "Mannaz", some talking-head professor said it was the symbol for "humanity", but, it was turned upside-down.

So this cop. He's glowing blue and floating. And the god-guy made more of those didgeridoo noises, and the cop made the same noises. Some of the news said that the god-talk sounds like Mongolian throat singing but I've never heard that, so I don't know. So anyways, the god-guys go back to talking, and the cop sinks to the ground and walks over to the other cops, and starts touching their faces. At first they were sort of all rushing to help him, and that's how he was able to flip up their riot helmets and get to their foreheads.

Right, I need to finish this up and get out of here. I think they figured out how to get in here.

OK, long story short,

The "Mannaz" guy, the news called him Mannaz Alpha, he starts touching other people on the face, and they do the whole "now-I'm-Dr. Manhattan-too" shit, and they were basically like the seeds. They turned into "Mannaz" guys too except theirs didn't cover their whole face, just their foreheads. So they started making more people, a couple more Mannaz guys each, and then also a bunch of "Perthro" guys. Perthro represents "mystery" or something. So these Perthro guys, they're the scary ones. They immediately start either wrecking or carving over every kind of words, any kind of printed stuff, signs, books, magazines, anything, with more runes. Runes that nobody even knew existed, not even the talking head professors.

And if they can't carve over it, they destroy it.

Like DVDs or whatever, there was this other news clip of the Perthro guys burning video stores to the ground because they figured that they couldn't overwrite the digital information on the discs. Computers, too, they would wreck computers or anything. A guy got turned into a Perthro, and the first thing he did was stomp the thumbdrive on his keyring into dust. They would shoulder right past people, not doing anything but trumpeting as loud as they could to signal to a Mannaz, and proceed on their mindless way. You put a concrete wall between a Perthro guy and a stone tablet, and he'd punch his way through eventually and use pieces of the rebar to carve over the tablet. (I know that's a weird example but there was a news clip of that exact thing happening in a museum, they showed the surveillance footage. Oh, surveillance cameras, uh, read the book called 1984 to learn about those).

So anyway there are other guys, the Hagalaz guys are bad, they wreck any kind of machinery or anything more complex than a wheel. They'll tear up the engine out of a car but leave the axles and wheels alone, and the Eihwaz guys just sort of stand around unless they see a normal human, then they'll just grab you and hold on while they holler that noise out and wait for a Mannaz guy to show up and turn you blue.

And the Ansuz guys, that's like a letter "F", I only ever saw one but I'm guessing there's more, they just sing that didgeridoo stuff constantly. The theory on the news is that they're like repeater towers to send the instructions to everyone else.

So these blue guys, they start spreading everywhere, the Uruz guys, they can fucking fly, so they will grab a Mannaz guy and fly him to wherever. Madagascar closed their borders pretty early but that didn't stop the Uruz guys from flying over anyway. It took them like a month for them to get everywhere in the world. It would have taken less time than that, but sometimes they got lost in the second and third skies. Those weren't always there. We used to just have one, and you couldn't see heaven from the ground.

OK, there are a bunch of black and white notebooks that have more about what people could figure out about how the blue guys worked, I won't waste anymore time with that.

Don't try to shoot them or whatever weapons you have, because they probably don't work. They found that out in the Midwest when all the doomsday guys tried killing them. (Oh, the Hagalaz guys, they'll tear up guns but they leave bows and arrows alone.) Maybe lasers or something will work, I don't know, but bullets definitely didn't, or bombs either, or napalm or chemicals. The military captured an Eihwaz and the news found out about the tests they did, I saw this footage of bullets they shot at him and it's like the glowy part of their blueness is actually a force field.

I'm sorry for wasting so much time talking about the blue guys. They're probably going to be gone when you get here. But, just in case, you should know about them, in case they come back whenever this happens again. Also, it's pretty much the only thing I can add to the stuff I was able to save here.

OK, I have to put this down and go find somewhere else to hide. This stuff should be safe from the Perthro guys. They don't seem too smart, but they did get into bank vaults and locked libraries and stuff, but they probably won't look under an outhouse.

This building used to be a park service shelter. It's concrete, so it shouldn't burn when Surtr does his thing. I came out here because it's pretty close to the redwood that started growing when all of this started. It's a couple thousand feet tall now. I'm pretty sure it's Yggdrasil, and you'll be climbing down any day now.

If you do find all of this and learn a bunch of stuff, don't think I'm a god or something, they're all dead. I'm just a person who wrote some stuff down. A lot of people from before made that mistake, and it caused some problems.

OK. Wish me luck.

Goodbye.


Oh the weight it must be light,
wherever you are
And I know you don't think twice,
wherever you are


I am going to leave some things here.

Yes, right here.

On the off chance you will come by to see if there are embers still burning. Sometimes smoke indicates a fire is dead, sometimes it means the opposite.

Here is a collection of origami animals: a squirrel, a seagull and a racooon (This last one looks more like a dachsund, but no matter).

Here are some newspaper clippings: a story about a cat rescued from an attic, another about an Alzheimer's patient found aboard a bus six hours away from his nursing home, and one about a high school football coach who recovered his state championship ring at a yard sale, 30 years after losing it. Yes, there's a common theme.

There is also a small stack of poems. Some original, some stolen. All of them involve people who attempt to communicate with each other, without success. Don't think it is about failure. The intention is to capture the effort. The words are descriptions of the try .

I am going to leave some things here

Just because.



and I'd ask if you're all right
wherever you are
And do you think of me? You might,
wherever you are
Trespassers William - Different Stars

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