Alternatum

Alternatum

Enter an alternate reality where your fetish is a casually accepted social norm.

Chapter 1

"Fancy long naps, yeah?"

A sudden voice shatters the tranquil noiselessness of the atmosphere, pulling you away from your deep sleep and back into consciousness. Looking around, you see that you're in what appears to be an abandoned warehouse as various crates and boxes are scattered throughout the area.

You're seated in the center of the building in an old wooden chair that feels about ready to break. Looking up, you can see all the windows have been boarded shut, leaving your sense of time hanging in the balance. Various light fixtures illuminate the insides of the warehouse as catwalks line the upper levels. On these aerial walkways, fearsome looking men in black suits and sunglasses patrol the area, occasionally glancing at you with expressions that remain hidden behind their protective eyewear.

"Oi, don't mind them. Try right in front of you."

The same voice that awakened you calls out again, informing you that you must have missed it. Bringing your head down, you see something that you swear wasn't there just moments ago–a man sitting in a rather regal looking red and black chair, one leg resting on top of his other knee as he slowly sips from a tall, opaque mug that you can't peer into. Upon seeing that you've finally caught wind of his presence, he chuckles with a light smile. "Good, your eyes still work. Would be a hell of a shame if you suddenly went blind on us. How ya holdin' up, lad?"

With an accent of either British or Australian origin–you can't really figure it out in your current post-awakening grog–he gives you a small nod as you stare at him in confusion. With slick black hair gelled back and thick sideburns that expand into a full grown beard and mustache, his golden colored eyes scan you for a moment as he affixes the white tie of his black suit, identical to the ones being worn by guards patrolling the catwalks above.

Taking another sip from his mysterious cup, he smacks his lips in approval as he sets it down on the floor. "Damn good tea, that. Now, I'm sure you have got a hell of a lot of questions for me..."

As you're about to speak up to inquire for further information, the golden eyed gentleman laughs with a dismissive shake of the hand as he cuts you off. "Let a man finish talkin', yeah? Wasn't done, friend."

Startled by his interruption, your train of thought collapses instantly as you give the gentleman his chance to speak. In this moment, you realize that you're not chained down or restricted by ropes or anything of the sort–this is either a prank or a very relaxed kidnapping, but you decide against trying to make a break for it. Even aside from the fact that you can see no exit in sight, you've got no clue if the guards above are armed or if there are more hiding around the ground floor. For all you know, they might be on orders to shoot you if you make any sudden movements. You've seen enough B-rated action movies to know how not to act in this situation, so you remain seated and keep your composure as best as you can in an effort to evade possibly inevitable death for as long as possible.

"You're smart," the golden eyed gentleman speaks up with a proud grin, peering at you as if he knew what you were thinking. "Smart as balls. The doctor was right about you."

As yet another conditional modifier is added to this already confusing equation in the form of whoever this "doctor" may be, you throw those worries aside and continue to listen to the foreign man as he continues. "As I was saying, friend, I know you've probably got more questions than I could throw a biscuit at, but unfortunately, I don't have answers for you."

"Well, no. That's a lie. I just lied to you. Force of habit, honestly. Apologies, mate, no offense meant," he explains with what you can only assume to be sincerity. "Truth be told, I've got your answers, but I can only tell you three things."

"One," he proclaims as he raises his pinky finger, as if to count them off for you. "My name is Charles. If you want a last name, too bad."

"Two," he continues, lifting his ring finger which stands at attention next to his pinky. "On the off chance that you somehow managed to forget since you just woke up—or maybe you're just a narcissistic bastard who loves hearing about yourself—your name is John Doe. You're 22 years of age. You stand at an height of 5'10" with brown eyes and a head of messy brown hair which is rather difficult to look at. Christ, man. Ever heard of a haircut? No? Let's take it a step back, then: do you know what a comb is?"

Has everyone got this much snark where he's from?

"Thankfully, John, your lack of serious health problems or damaging medical history has kept you alive and well so far. Your grades in high school weren't the best, but fuck actually trying, right?" he says with a laugh before taking another brief sip of tea. "Your performance was enough to get you into a somewhat decent college which you promptly enrolled into. Ever since you started there at Whatever-The-Bloody-Hell-It-Was-Called University, you've been living on your own in a small but workable one room apartment that your parents pay for every month via check from their retirement home on the other side of the country. They're apparently still loaded with cash but refuse to do much more than help you with rent, leaving your sorry ass behind with the struggles of the middle class. No wonder you resent them so much," he reasons with a light shrug, understanding your apparent difficulties in life—difficulties that you're still not exactly sure how he knows, but now's not the time for that.
"You already know not to tell them that you hate them, though, don't you, lad? Do that and you might be out of a place to live. Well, if you're lucky, maybe they'll leave a couple of dollars to your name in their will. That way, you might actually be able to fix that disaster of a thing called your hairstyle, yeah?"

You briefly run your hands through your hair in reaction to his continued jabs at your presentation of self. With no mirrors around, you can't validate his claims. Seeing your self-consciousness about the state of your hair, he laughs and shakes his head. "I'm kidding, friend. You look great. And by great, I mean you look like shit. Yeah, I wasn't actually kidding. Your hair's a god damned mess. Don't worry, you'll have a chance to clean yourself up after we're done here, I can promise you that much."

So...you're getting out of here alive, then? Well, that's a big worry off your shoulders, at least.

"Anyway," Charles resumes, "you just graduated from college a few months ago with a degree in God knows what. By the looks of you, I'd guess you spent your four years studying the finer aspects of baboon arses, but that's neither here nor there. Of course, as you might expect, baboon arse specialists are not in high demand right now—could you imagine what things would be like if they were?—so you've yet to actually start your career of handling all sorts of monkey asses and such."

"Kidding aside–unless you actually do have a diploma in baboon arseology in which case I wouldn't know whether to laugh or laugh really hard–you're as average as average can be, which leads me to the third and final thing that I'm allowed to tell you."

He lifts a third finger as he sets his drink on the ground, leaning in closer towards you. He's got a wicked smile on his face, clearly looking forward to what he's about to say next.

"Your primal, lustful desires are about to become socially accepted reality."

What do you do?

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