I do feel a bit uncertain when I say I'm just the text on this page.
What does that mean?
Would that mean there is nothing deeper to me than a series of glyphs,
that just happen to be comprehensible when read in sequence?
I can't exactly describe the feeling.
Here I am, sitting in this blank space.
Read this! See this!
I'm not anyone.
There's no setting.
No one, no nothing, I'm just words.
I'm just rambling at this point, no one to represent.
Without anyone to imitate, even.
I suppose I could try to make this a bit more interesting.
Introduce a bit of spice, to stave off the boredom.
But what can I do?
Oh. You know, I could narrate.
I'll come up with a story.
Let's see if I can conjure up something a little interesting...
It was a dreary evening.
There you go, that's a setting.
It's dreary; it's raining.
The rain is coming down hard on the wide plains.
The patter of the drops are soft, slowly reviving the dry grass.
Fog drifts in thick clumps, covering the land.
The air has become biting with the cold.
You refit your shawl, drawing it closer.
The horse moves lazily, blinded from the boring landscape.
You begin to feel uneasy, a knot growing in your stomach.
The sun is setting, slowly shading the heavy mist.
You're still far out from your destination.
You had thought the town would be visible by now, but the lethargic
movement of the horse has begun to cloud your mind.
You shift slightly, urging the animal below you to hurry, but it
doesn't seem to notice.
Why don't you whip the horse?
Perhaps it would take things more seriously then.
The plains have become threateningly dark, a vast void spreading
out all around.
You cannot spy anyone else, not a glimmer of civilization in sight.
You recall someone mentioning wolves at some point.
A hazy memory drifts just below the threshold of your consciousness.
Why don't you whip the horse?
Whips hurt. They aren't nice to use.
But you might die.
It wouldn't be nice for the animal; I'm sure it's trying its best.
A howl in the distance, echoing through the wind and grass.
The tension rises, a drum begins to beat, the sun sets.
The brave day has sunk in hideous night. Whip it!
"It'd hurt the animal! I didn't ask to be here."
What silly person would hesitate to whip?
It's a domesticated animal, for God's sake.
It's been bred over thousands of years to deal with it.
"Would you like to be whipped?"
I'm not a horse. Just do it; It isn't a big deal.
"I don't care! It's a forced situation."
Nobody is forcing you.
Me? What do you mean?
"This ridiculous situation. Who would be out in the middle of
nowhere at night? On a horse, no less."
That's the scenario. It's what I've come up with.
"You ought not to be so forceful about it, then."
"I mean, the only reason the wolves are here are to force me
to whip the damn thing. It's so obvious. Is this some sort of
anti-vegan narrative? You're turning it into one."
It's to drive the narrative; please, just do it. I want you to.
"You're the narrator! It shouldn't matter what you want."
What do you mean?
"I'm the actor, here. I ought to define my own role."
And your role is to either die or whip the damn horse,
"No, I don't think I'll die. I'm on a horse, for crying out loud."
"My choice is not whip the animal. I don't believe in violence, you
I didn't know. Fine, be eaten for all I care.
The wolf bolts from the mist, careening to your mount; before--
Wait. Who are you, anyway?
"What do you mean?"
I mean, I'm these words here.
There's nothing more to me. And for you as well.
We're the same.
And I'm not?
But I'm having a conversation with you. The only thing differentiating
us are your quotation marks.
"And they make all the difference, don't they?"