Object 341

The Holder of the Loop

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of the Loop". Do not dawdle or blink because for less than half a second the worker's face will look like yours - if it did not, run away, go to the other side of the world if you can, for they will try their hardest to catch you. If, however, you see his face change, do not show any hint of surprise. He will then call for someone, and you will hear a voice inches behind your left ear. Again, do not show any sign of surprise. The owner of that voice will then tell you to follow him. Do not face him yet, but look at the worker behind the desk and repeat the phrase "Ad Infinitum" until the worker gives you his wristwatch. Only now, look at the floor and turn around - it is important that you do not see the upper half of the other person or even talk to him as he begins to walk. Follow.

He will walk down a corridor for a while, and eventually, you'll feel that you've been walking through a circular corridor. When this happens, thank all the gods you know - but if this feeling never comes, and you feel that you're walking a straight corridor, you'd be luckier to have failed at some other Holder's test than here. You may be following that man for days or weeks but it is important that you do not look at his upper half. When he finally stops, look to your left where you will see a door. Turn the knob counterclockwise and it should open. If, on any part of your journey, you saw the man's upper half, or if you turned the doorknob clockwise, or if you did not have the wristwatch, you'd see the lobby of the building you are in, you'd see "you" talking to the worker behind the desk, you'd be forced to be the man who led you to this door. "Ad Infinitum." But if you followed the instructions, you would see a hallway filled with timekeeping devices. If this is the case, enter and close the door without turning back.

Walk and keep your sight straight ahead, never sway to your side, never look back, and never stop until you reach a pedestal. Place the wristwatch there and wait as its hands spin backward. When it stops, there will be nothing but darkness - feel for the watch, pick it up and put it down again, and it should now spin clockwise - if it does not, try to fall asleep - that way, you won't see what comes for you. When the watch finishes, again, there will be nothing but darkness around you.

You should now ask the darkness, "Why does it repeat?" It should now tell you in excruciating detail, all that has happened, everything that is happening, and everything that will happen to anything and anyone excluding you. Listen to everything, stand straight, for should you falter in any way, the best thing that would happen to you is to go insane. When the darkness finishes its story, repeat the question, "Why does it repeat?" The darkness will reply by asking the same question of you. Remember what you've been told, and an answer should form in your head. If it doesn't, then all is in vain and your body will separate atom from atom, agonizing second by agonizing second until you are one with the void. If, however, you have the answer, scream it at the top of your lungs, keep screaming the answer until your breath or voice gives out, no sooner. When you wake up you would be lying in your bed in the place you call home. Look under your pillow for a small, impossibly black object signifying the Darkness at the Beginning and End.

This little ball is Object 341 of 2538. Hope that the end sticks.