One Three One Three Recurring...
rating: 0+x

There's nothing quite like the feeling of entering a room full of people — busy people, with other people to talk to and things to get done — and having them all turn to watch you enter. Something about a dozen simultaneous gazes has a way of briefly reducing a person's psyche to something resembling a kind of psychological porridge; in that moment they'll be caught like a deer in headlights, every nerve in their body calling out for a fight or fight response, and by God they're not a fighter. They'll want to run, but instead they'll force themself forward, foot after infinite foot, clawing their way through eternity as their face flushes red. Those few crucial seconds will stretch out as they look up through frantic eyes and determine where they need to go, what they need to do, whether they'll be getting out alive…

And then, more often than not, someone will say something and reality will come crashing back down like a soothing tsunami, knocking them conscious again. Eternity will unravel, the passage of time will snap back into place, and the primal fear will be replaced with comfortable, familiar embarrassment, This is what was currently happening to Research Assistant Daniel Forsting as he walked in, twenty minutes late, to an orientation seminar on the Foundation's Department of Mathematics. The man on the podium — a sinewy mass of scar tissue and muscle wrapped in a set of field gear so battered it might've just been coughed up by some eldritch horror — paused in his assault on the blackboard and turned slowly to face him.

"Ah. Threadbare jacket, turned-up nose, expression of nigh-permanent bewilderment; you've got to be Mr. Forsting. Thanks for gracing us with your presence at last."

"Th- thank you. I'll, uh…" Daniel looked around. "Sorry, there don't seem to be any seats left."

"So there aren't."

"I'll just… stand here, then."

"So you shall. Now, for the benefit of those of us who weren't present for my introduction the first time, I'll repeat myself. My name's Professor Randall Hutchinson. You'll call me Professor Hutchinson, or sir. If I tell you to jump, you'll ask how high. If I tell you to shoot your colleague in the face, you'll be lining them up before I've finished saying 'and that's an order'. If I tell you to find the definite integral of a discontinuous function for which key values are unspecified, you will attempt to find the definite bloody integral of the discontinuous bloody function. In the words of my late father…" He paused to strike a match on the blackboard and light a cigarette, ignoring the glares from the various supervising personnel.

"I run this shitshow."


Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License