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Author Topic: The Story Wanderer  (Read 495 times)

Offline Sparky

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The Story Wanderer
« on: 02. September 2022, 19:17:13 PM »
So, over in the "Club" story area, I posted a couple of episodes of "The Story Wanderer". Whilst posting the episodes over on Deviant Art, I discovered another bit I had written for the "Asian Braces Storyverse, plus I have an episode where he will meet Serena, so thought I'd just post them here, for you to all read!

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So, the name of the story is "The Story Wanderer". Bruce's device will indeed take him to other universes.... the universes of our stories, here on Braces Forum. At some point, I'll try and include Bruce into one of my stories, to sort of introduce him to you all. After that, it's kinda like "Quantum Leap": when he leaves one story world by pressing that yellow button, he will jump to a completely different storyline, in another story.

I'm sure, over time, he'll improve / tidy up the device on his arm, but that yellow "GO" button and the small flashing LED will be the 2 constant things about it! (just because I say so!).

There is, of course, no reason why he might not end up back in his own 'storyverse', so could easily pop up in "Escape from the Apocalypse", in one (or more) of the stories.

Guys, lets have some fun with Bruce (named in 15 seconds, I was thinking "Bruce Wayne" at the time)!

-------

To other writers who would like to include Bruce, here's a bit about him:

The Story Wanderer - Bruce's profile

Bruce is a good looking guy, 5ft 11ins tall, quite muscular (he used to go training at the gym, and do some running too), and is clearly quite intelligent, mainly on the technical side of things. No, not a hacker, but probably knows computers well enough to do wha he needs with them. Clearly good at electronics, plus the specific software to drive his device (it needs a silly name!)

Not a particularly snappy dresser, he's wearing jeans, a polo shirt and trainers when he does his first 'jump'. He probably put his laptop, mains power supply, and 'device interface' into his rucksack, so has all he need to be able to continue trying to develop (and fix?) his device. He also took his mobile phone, and charger, and strangely, it will continue to work in all the places he visits (well, maybe not in the "Bracing For The Apocalypse" world, as there's no working mobile phone system!). He'll also discover that his debit and credit cards both seem to work in most of the other worlds, just like it USED TO in his own world!

He's definitely handsome, short red hair, and a short tidy beard (no moustache). Blue eyes. Doesn't need glasses or hearing aids. Has 'perfect' teeth, but a love of braces to go with it. He used to join in on a couple of online braces forums, and recently bought some fake retainers.

And, one common theme I think we need to include is that his "device" always takes him into a situation where there are braces. I suspect it might take him a jump or two to realise that, and then he'll maybe be wondering WHY his device is doing that!


=========================


Escape from the Apocalypse Storyverse


His name was Bruce. His world was almost destroyed: he doesn't know what actually happened, all he knows is that society as he knew it is no more.

He was a technical researcher at the university, investigating the multi-universe theories, and had been very close to creating a portable device that would allow him to possibly travel to those other universes.

Then 'IT' happened. He wasn't sure what 'IT' was, all he knew is that there was no mains power any more, so no TV, no internet, and no way to actually find out what HAD happened. People were leaving the town in droves, and it was clear that this was not a place to stay. He could have fled himself, but decided to try and quickly complete his research, and flee this world in another way....

He managed to find enough food to last a few days, and found a small generator and a small stock of petrol to run it long enough to be able to complete his project.

The device wasn't particularly elegant, but it was small enough to strap to his arm. He covered the important bits with several layers of gaffer tape, then went home and picked up a few important things, including his fake retainers that he's recently bought online from The Braces Shop.... yeah, they'd be out of business by now, he guessed.

Having put the braces, a few lightweight clothes, and the small amount of food he had left, into his rucksack, he turned the device on. Yes, he was nervous, but with a choice of staying here, and certainly dying, or going somewhere else, where he might actually manage to survive, it was actually a very easy choice to make.

The tiny power light blinked on his device, and he pressed the yellow* "GO" button!

(* yellow because that was the only one he had!)

The room around him went fuzzy for a few moments, and the next thing he knew was.....


==========================


Asian Braces Storyverse


Amanda was preparing for court, so Danny had gone out for a walk by himself. He was walking across the local park, enjoying looking at nature, when he spotted something between some bushes. He looked a bit closer: it looked like some sort of steam-punk accessory, made of leather, or something similar, with straps to attach it to your arm.

So he picked it up and had a better look at it. There was a bit where the electronics would pretend to be, covered in a load of heavy tape. At the thinner end, so he assumed the wrist end, was a small USB socket, and a yellow and a green button. There was a bit of soil on it, and a few leaves, so he brushed it off. Whatever it was, it looked interesting.

He strapped it to his arm, just to feel what it was like... it looked and felt pretty good. He tried pressing the green button, and a blue and a red LED came on for a moment, then both faded away. He did it again, and unsurprisingly, the same thing happened.

Clearly someone had either thrown it away, or had lost it, so he decided to take it home, and have a further look at it.

Back home, he sat down at his desk, turned on the desk light, and took a closer look at this thing. He used his tweezers to gently peel back the heavy tape a little way to see what was there: underneath there was a circuit board, bursting with components, as well as a few attached with wires. Because of those loose wires, he decided not to go any further, but to gently feel through the tape: he could feel what appeared to be some batteries. So he opened his drawer, and found a USB charger and cable, and plugged it in to the power: it would be interesting to see what this actually did - he was guessing that the lights would flash, and maybe it would make some sort of buzzing or beeping noise when the buttons were pressed.

When he came back a couple of hours later, the blue LED was occasionally flashing: clearly things were coming back to life. He picked it up, and gently pressed the green button: the blue LED came on solid, and the red one flashed twice. Ok, let's see what the other button, the yellow one does. He pressed the yellow button. The red LED came on solid. Something beeped three times, then everything around him went hazy.

Slowly, everything became normal again. I say 'normal' but that's not really quite right. Things stopped being hazy and fuzzy, but he wasn't in his room any more, he seemed to be in someone else's living room, and that someone else was sat in a chair opposite him.

"Erm, I'm sorry, but I have no idea where I am, or how I got here...." said Danny. He was very worried that whoever was in that chair might get agressive, after all, he appeared to have just 'broken in' to his house. "I'm Danny by the way"

"Hi Danny, I'm Bruce, and that looks like my controller, thanks for bringing it back to me, I thought I'd lost it. Seems that the 'homing beacon' actually works!" he said with a slight American accent. Danny looked down at the object in his hands - Bruce had called it a controller. Oh, and he didn't seem at all annoyed with Danny, which was also good.

"Ok, Bruce.... yeah, I found this thing in the bushes in Roundwood Park in London. So where are we?"

"Ah, yes. Well, the good news is that you are still in London, and if you're lucky, you should still be in your own story-verse, and the time may even be the same". He told Danny the time and the date, which matched what it had been a few minutes ago, at his place.

"My own story-verse? And what IS this controller thing?" Danny asked, passing it over to him.

"It's a long story, Danny. I was in Phoenix, in America, in a story-verse where something bad happened - I don't know what, but all power, mobile phones, internet and so on was suddenly killed off. I'd been working on this controller for some time, it's supposed to be able to take me to 'alternate universes in the multiverse'. It wasn't quite finished, but I was able to use a generator to give me power for a couple of days, to try and finish it off. Finally, I decided that trying it out, and maybe dying whilst doing so was preferable to a rather more certain death where I was. When I pressed that yellow button, I was transported, into another story-verse"

"Story-verse? Surely you mean universe?"

"Well, sort of. I suspect you don't actually realise, but you don't actually exist, you are just a character in a story. Like I was. But this allowed me to jump into another story - which was better than my own, so I didn't mind too much"

"So, you mean you jumped into my story-verse then?"

"No, this is my... sixth jump. I came here a few days ago, and managed to have my bag taken from me, which had the controller in it. You say you found it in a park?"

"Yeah. I tried pressing the buttons, but nothing really happened, so I took it home to look at it a bit more. I'd spotted the USB charging port, so charged it. Then I tried the green button, and then the yellow button...."

"Well, you got the right sequence! I only added the green button recently, it turns it on and off, to save some power, and the yellow one makes it operate. I also added the 'homing beacon' thing at the same time, but had never had a chance to test it, but it looks like it worked."

"Ok... but you never fully answered my question: Am I still in my own universe?"

"You got a phone, with internet?"

"Of course!"

"Ok, let's start simple: is it working?". I tried accessing BBC News, which worked.

"Ok, then bring up Ask Jeeves, and search for something specific to your story"

"Ask Jeeves, what the hell is that?"

"A search engine, like Alta Vista or Infoseek..."

"Oh, you mean Google?"


"You guys still have Google? Wow, they went bust in my story-verse ages ago"

"Google is the big one for us. So what about Bing and Yahoo then?"

"They were still around, not too popular though. So, use your Google to look for something"

"That should be easy, my girlfriend Amanda was in the news a few weeks ago". He searched, and found the news article. "Looking good. Ok, so if I'm in my own universe, Google maps should tell me where I am.". Danny waited for the GPS to give a lock.

"No way!" he said

"What is it?" asked Bruce.

"I think you must be living next door to me!" Danny went over to the window, and looked out onto the street: yep, it looked like he was next door!

"Hey, Danny" said Bruce, "I don't suppose you are any good with tech stuff are you?"

"Yeah, I'm in tech support... why?"

"Well, now I got my controller back, I'd like to continue working on it, but I've no idea where to get stuff from. Maybe you could help me?"

"Hey, Bruce, I have an idea... your place is a little 'sparse' shall we say: why don't you come over to my place, have a coffee, and we can chat?"

"That would be nice, thank you! Would you mind if I brought my laptop with me, I could do with searching your internet, see if I find some useful information"

-------

"There you go" Danny said, putting the cup of coffee down next to Bruce. Bruce was sat at Danny's table, and had managed to connect himself to Danny's wifi, and was getting used to using the strange search providers in this storyverse.

"Oh, thanks!"

"Looks like you're all connected ok"

"Yes, and I think that CPC site will be able to give me almost everything I need"

"Good news. So, a silly question: how do you pay for stuff?"

"Well, I don't understand how, but my bank accounts and credit cards all seem to work fine here, my phone too! I guess it must be one of those perversities of the multiple storyverses!"

"So, how similar and how different are the multiple storyverses?" Danny asked

"A lot is the same, it seems to be the details, and the knock-on effects of the details, that seem to differ. So, we were talking about search engines: I suspect the reason that different search engines are more popular on some storyverses than others comes down to maybe just one or two small details, which then snowball into the end results. Same with the politics... clearly something happened in my storyverse that caused some sort of catastrophe, but didn't seem to happen in the other storyverses. But there seems to be one very strange consistency, and I really have no idea why it is..." explained Bruce

"Oh, what's that then?" asked Danny

"Well, I'm going to make a BIG presumption here, Danny, that you are the main character in this story. I'll be blunt: Danny, do you have a braces fetish of any sort? And by braces, I'm talking about the ones in your mouth.... Or maybe it's teeth?"

Danny just stood there, his mouth open wide. He hardly knew Bruce, yet he was asking a very forward question, one which you'd not expect someone to ask.

"Ummm...." said Danny, feeling rather embarrassed

"I'll take that as a 'yes' then! So far, when I've jumped into a storyverse, I fairly quickly meet someone who has a thing for braces, and I'm assuming in all cases that they are therefore the story's main character. Not sure where the braces were in my own original storyverse though...."

Danny smiled at the whole idea of storyverses with braces in, and then had a thought. "Where you come from, would you maybe describe it as 'apocalyptic'? I know it's a bit of an extreme term, but bear with me..."

"Yeah..... at a stretch, I guess you could!... why do you ask?"

"Well, there's this braces website, and it has loads of different stories there, and there's one called 'Bracing for the Apocalypse', maybe that's YOUR story?"

"Interesting idea.... can we take a look?" asked Bruce. Danny directed him to the Braces Forum website, but as a visitor, he didn't have access to the board that contained the story.

(Bruce recognises the site from other storyverses, but the stories & users are a bit different)

"Let me use my computer, then it will auto-log me in....". Danny opened his personal laptop, and logged in to the Braces Forum site, and found the story, but it appeared to have been deleted. "Hang on, I'm sure there will be a copy in the 'Braces Archives' site. A few minutes later, and Danny had downloaded the stories, which he put on a USB stick that he handed over to Bruce.

Having loaded the stories onto his own PC, Bruce started scan-reading them. "Hmm, that does kinda sound a bit like my world, although it doesn't really say what happened."

They continued chatting until they had both finished their coffees.

"I'm sorry Bruce, but I'm going to have to kick you out, I'm supposed to be meeting up with my girlfriend, Amanda. But keep in touch. And if you can get onto my wifi from your place, then you're welcome to use it."

"Yeah, thanks for everything you've done, Danny, with a bit of luck those parts I ordered should be delivered in a few days, and I can make a few upgrades to my controller. Its a bit hit & miss at the moment, I need to make it a bit more controllable"

"So, you planning on sticking around here, I mean, it's pretty safe storyverse"

"I'm not sure. The idea appeals, but I have this strange urge to go and explore other storyverses...."


to be continued......

Offline Sparky

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Re: The Story Wanderer
« Reply #1 on: 03. September 2022, 16:25:47 PM »
Serena's story-verse


Serena, Sarah and Harper had gone out to some fields just outside town to practise their magic, and Samantha had come along too, partly to watch, partly to be able to use her recovery magic if the others needed it. Specifically they had been working on light-magic based teleporting for Sarah and Harper... for 'combat' purposes, short distance teleporting was all they needed. Harper was having a ball, combining both teleporting, levitation, and her gymnastics skills: with Serena keeping a 'summoning' spell on standby to 'catch' her if she fell, she was now able to jump into trees, and back down again really easily. The next step would be to find either a building or some cliffs she could try out her skills on.

Anyway, before they had gone to where they were, Serena had done a very careful probe around the area: the last thing they needed was a 'normie' seeing what they were doing! In addition, Serena repeated the scan every so often, in case someone else turned up. She even had Wanda on alert, doing the same thing.

They were sitting down, taking a quick break, when Wanda popped up.

"Excuse me, but I'm sensing someone, and they are actually quite nearby - how they had got so close so quickly, I don't know." said Wanda. "I guess they COULD be a witch who has teleported.... I'd better disappear, just in case it's not!".

Serena scanned around, and quickly found the person, and then probed them. "No, not a witch..." said Serena. "From what I can work out, they are in that small clump of trees over there, and are walking towards us.."

"So, probably that person coming out of the trees right now then?" said Harper. As he got closer, Serena could see that he seemed to be male, probably mid 20's, reasonably tall, short red hair and a beard. Dressed in jeans and some sort of polo top, and actually not all that bad looking. On his back he had a rucksack, and he had something large on his left wrist.

"Ok, so we're just 4 friends, having a walk out in the countryside...." said Sarah.

The guy came over towards them.

"Well, good afternoon, ladies, my name is Bruce, although some people have called me 'The Story Wanderer'".

"Hi Bruce! I'm Harper" said Harper.

"'The Story Wanderer'? What's one of those?" asked Serena.

"Well, if you don't mind me joining you for a few minutes, I'll try and explain."

"By all means," said Serena. Prima face, Bruce seemed to be a pleasant guy, and she knew that she could EASILY use her magic to 'control' him if he became any sort of threat.

"So, what I'm about to tell you probably sounds very strange, but please believe me, I'm telling you the truth. Have you ever seen 'The Matrix', the film with Keanu Reeves in it?"

"Yes, hasn't everyone? ... hang on, you're not going to tell us that we're all just dreaming, and the machines have taken over the world?" suggested Samantha.

"Not quite, but not actually THAT far off. The reality of it is that none of us is real, we are all nothing more than characters in an online story. This little thing on my wrist..." Bruce held up his left arm, to show a sort of gauntlet, with several buttons and a display on it. "... this lets me jump between stories, between the story-verses. I was in a story called 'Bracing for the Apocalypse', where things were not going too good, we had no comms, no power, no food. I stayed a few more days to get this little piece of tech working, then hot-footed it out of there!"

"Oh, come on, what a load of poppycock!" said Sarah.

"I kid you not! I've actually been to several story-verses now, and have met quite a few people who have actually been very pleasant and helpful to me. But it gets stranger than that, there is a common theme to these stories in the many storyverses."

"And that is?"

"Let me put it this way: which of you has the braces, and which of you has the braces fetish?". Things suddenly went a bit silent. "Well, come on then..." asked Bruce.

"That'll be ME then," said Harper, "Although her braces are FAR more extreme than mine!".

Bruce leaned his head back and laughed. "I don't know why, but it always happens!! There's ALWAYS braces wherever I jump!"

"Ok, so these stories.. what are they, and where are they?"

"Don't suppose you have internet connectivity here, do you?"

Serena got her phone out. "Yup, pretty good signal..."

"Ok, then, go look at a site called 'bracesforum.net', then go look at the stories forum...."

"Ok, yes, I can see that." said Serena 37 seconds later.

"Ok, let me think where I've been recently. Ah, yeah, seeing 'Bracing for the Apocalypse' there? That's MY story, or rather WAS my story. Then you should see 'Asian Braces': Danny was a really nice guy, very helpful with sorting out this tech kit. Oh, yeah, 'Elida'... now that one was just WIERD... loads of little fairies... one of them had got herself and her friend stuck in a time loop..."

"Did you just say a fairy called 'Elida'? I know her!"

"Dresses in a cute stripy top, a skirt and trainers? Redhead, like me?" said Bruce. Serena nodded. "Lovely kid, and has her own story, take a look!"

"OMG! He's right!"

"So, when I jump into a new story-verse, I always seem to find the central characters pretty much straight away, and there's always braces involved, usually in some strange, and not quite so normal way. So, come on, what's your story then? I've probably seen it when I was in one of the other storyverses."

"Well, we're all witches, and..." started Serena.

"No, you can't tell him that!" said Sarah.

"It doesn't REALLY matter, I can always just wipe his memory if it becomes an issue!"

"Yeah, true, I guess you can, can't you?"

"So, I'm Serena, a witch with the ability to do dark magic. I was described in a prophecy, and have a mouth full of braces..."

"Ah, yes, I vaguely recognise your story. Something to do with re-uniting the covens, and fighting some sort of nasty dark threat?"

"You are KIDDING me?" said Serena, very surprised.

"No, it was one of the longer stories, not actually a LOT of braces in it, but yeah, your rather extreme braces kept popping up. Also something about some 'dark jewellery'...Hey, don't you all have some rather fancy talking wands?"

"Ok, yeah, that definitely sounds like us. I mean, where else you going to find talking wands? So how does our story end then? Do we actually defeat the dark threat?"

"No idea, the story only got as far as you guys finding your weapons. Look, from my perspective, it's no big deal that you guys are all witches, I know the story, been there, done that, and I have no real reason to want to tell anyone else about you while I'm here. And if it's a problem for you, I'm happy to just move on, find another story-verse."

"You know, I think I'm ok with Bruce, what do guys think?". Everyone seemed to be ok with Bruce. "So, I'm Serena, this is Harper... Samantha... and Sarah. And Wanda, you might as well show yourself to Bruce too!"

"Nice to meet you all! And Wanda, although I can't hear you, can I just say you look like a pretty cool wand! So, ok then, why are you REALLY out here, in the middle of a field?"