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Title: Follow the Path Submitted By: Blayne

[ed. note: Also see the great stories by Matt Francis (Yossarian) involving Marathon:Infinity and Rubicons' dream world. Ghosts of Wheeling and Marathon Man.]

I stood on the road, twilight already setting in. Looking at a two story building down the road, I headed down the deserted two way street. The neighborhood looked like a war zone, complete with weary, flickering lights and boarded up windows on soulless buildings. I didn't really know how I ended up on that street, I swear. It was just coincidence. I stopped my stroll long enough to light a cigarette. The stuff will kill you, mom use to say. Let the well enough alone Pa' would say. Now they're both in a home. A place that's probably a lot better than where I'm standing right now.
The building nearest me resembled an old hotel, seated between two red brick buildings. Faded letting spelt "The Journeys" something - there was enough worn out space to spell either 'beginning' or 'finish'. Maybe 'end', but that would have meant a lot of wasted sign space.

The stars were starting to come out, clouds fading into the twilight. All very poetic and such. I stood around for a while more, and decided to take a little walk up town. There, the buildings were still shoddy, but at least there were people around. This place was giving me the heebie-jeebies.
I flicked the butt of my cigarette into a nearby drain, and stopped in front of this huge white complex, right? There was a cop car, one of those really old fashion ones by the sound of the siren, coming closer. I just stayed put, because it's not like I was up to no good. Its siren faded into the distance and I took a closer look at this white building. It had this stucco exterior and not a window in sight. Although that's not really unusual in this area. Any place with a window had it broken long ago. I could see some huge smoke stacks on another part of the place. Really far away, they seemed.

I mean, - ya, I'm getting to that part.

As I was saying, these smoke stacks were big, and pumping out this smoke. The kind I remember thinking made clouds as a kid. Well, I'd had enough of admiring the scenery, so I continued on my merry way. I decided to go hit up Rudy's DIner; see if any was happening there. When I'm about a block away from the white complex, I feel the air around me, well... vibrate. I turn in time to see this huge plume of smoke go rocketing up from that building. Then, a split second later, the sound of it hits me. I swear I've never heard something so loud; like a July rocket in my head.

So, I'm standing there, in the main road, pieces of ash and what was probably stucco raining down like hellfire. My ears are still ringing, and I see this guy. He's running down the street, towards the horizon.
No, I'm telling you officer, the guy was running like he had the devil himself after him. Who knows, maybe he was running for a reason, it you catch my drift. What, my name? Sure, I'd tell you, but a lot of stuff just isn't adding up. How did you guys appear so fast? All you guys in suits. Kind of eerie if you ask me...

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