Object 258

The Holder of Gemini

In any city, in any country, go to any maternity ward you can get yourself to. Once there, search for any set of twins you can find. If there are none, then pity yourself, dear Seeker, for you have not been deemed worthy of this Object. The babies in this room will reveal themselves for the demons they truly are, and they will take great delight in inflicting the direst of tortures upon your very soul for the eons to come.

If you can find a set of twins, however, ask them to see someone who calls himself "The Holder of Gemini". The bassinet holding the twins will separate, revealing a staircase stretching down as far as the eye can see. If you've any doubt in your mind, flee now and never return to any maternity ward (hopefully, you realize what this means by extension). If you are determined to obtain this Object, however, descend the staircase. The bassinet will reform itself behind you; there's no going back now.

Eventually, the staircase will split into two. Both look identical, and indeed, they both lead to the same destination, but they are in fact very different paths. One staircase seems to continue on forever, yet has no imminent dangers. You will descend these stairs for weeks, perhaps even months, before you arrive at the bottom; it is highly likely that you'll lose your sanity before you make it that far. The other staircase will be shorter, but treacherous with nightmarish creatures. They will taunt and torment you, breathe in your face, and snarl in your ears, but they cannot harm you unless you stop. Don't hesitate, don't flinch, or you'll sorely regret it.

Regardless of which staircase you choose (for you'll not know which one you're on until it's too late to turn back), you'll eventually come to stand in front of a large stone door. Knock twice (and only twice, unless you perchance enjoy being rent in two), then enter. You'll find yourself in a simple stone chamber with a set of teenage identical twins standing on either side. Only one of these is the true Holder; the other is an imposter. Turn to one of them and ask, "Is there a backup plan?" May Hell have mercy on you should you ask the wrong twin.

Ask the right one, however, and you will suddenly see the entire universe reflected on every surface in the room. The Holder will then compare all of existence to the magnitude of the disaster that awaits should They be reunited; at this point, you will finally realize how insignificant the universe is in comparison to the power of the Objects. Many lose all hope here; in this case, the Holder will lay his hands on you, transforming you into one of the enslaved creatures inhabiting the shorter staircase.

If, against all odds, your resolve as a Seeker remains intact, look at the Holder dead in his two eyes and shout, as loud as you possibly can, "Be gone, both you and your foul illusions!" The Holder and the reflections around you should all shatter; all that should now be left in this chamber are yourself and a small, frameless, rectangular mirror, hardly larger than the palm of your hand. Take it, and you'll find yourself in the bathroom of the place you call home.

With this mirror, think of anything you can (up to and including the Holder of Gemini) and a perfect doppelganger of that person will appear before you (it will not work, however, on any inanimate object, or on any Holder you have not met, for if you truly knew who the Holder you thought of was, you'd have his, her, or its Object by now, anyway). This exact replica will be identical to the person you have thought of, down to the last-minute detail. However, as soon as the doppelganger leaves your sight, the real person or thing will die a most gruesome death, unless that person or thing is a Holder (which goes without saying). Be careful who or what you summon.

That mirror is Object 258 of 2538. Now that you've seen the outcome, will you strive to prevent it?