Object 443

The Holder of Ambivalence

I was a man, once. Then I became a Holder.

The Holder of Ambivalence.

This isn't my story, however. If anything, it's your story.

So I wish you luck with your endeavor. Try not to make a mistake - after all, I'm the product of a mistake.

Beyond the Object, you seek the rules. Even I am not above them. One might say I'm even bound by them - though, as you have learned, nothing is certain. Scoff you may, but it's all I dare comment on. They exist for a reason. Reasons you can't - and wouldn't attempt to - understand.

Perhaps I should begin - you know this well, by now, I imagine. "In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house you can get yourself to," - the phrase that led me to what I am. Begin the search. Walk up to the front desk, and with no emotion - none at all - ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of Ambivalence." If this is indeed the correct location, one of three events will occur.

The first, the most likely, will be a warm, open, and welcoming response. "Absolutely." Run. Escape the building, if the doors aren't already locked. My personal recommendation is the first place you can find a knife, but putting your own personal touch to it isn't a problem, either. End it quick. Contrary to how many think, death can be pleasant compared to eternity, and I'm the perfect one to ask.

The second, my personal favorite. Anger shall scorch from the attendant's mouth. "You'll never understand!" I'm inclined to agree - so do the "man" a favor and close your eyes. It will be better this way. It might even happen a bit faster.

The third may confuse you, but accept it. Just a nod. Congratulations, you have been deemed worthy. A hollow victory, for a Seeker, you know it will never end.

As you follow the man, keep your distance. Around ten feet. No closer, no further.

Fall behind, and you will be lost in the infinite reaches of these hallways, forever fated to walk them for eternity, sliding into insanity as you see the building in its true form. While I might add that I'm personally proud of the design, I suppose for someone such as yourself it's irrelevant.

Too close, and all I can say is when he turns around, you should as well. Just enough time remains to flood your mind with a pleasant memory. I enjoy beaches, myself.

Eventually, the hallways will become more rundown, almost archaic. By no means should you prefer into the rooms - they're mine, after all. You don't want to see what I've seen.

The man, by this point, will be gone. Walk further, and you'll see the abrupt end of the hall, with the edge seemingly falling into space. Quite the nice touch. Go ahead and fall through. You have my word that you'll - at least for the time being - be fine.

Welcome to my "world"; I often change the appearance, so that name, you may find, doesn't always fit perfectly. Time flows differently here, so I implore you to move quickly. A moment here could be centuries out there. Even I don't know how long it's been. Just be weary of wanting to stay here.

There's a small number of people here. What were once Seekers. They're all, by now anyway, completely detached from reality. I can't blame them, as I've done my best to make this a pleasant existence. Either way, ignore them.

Search quickly for me, I'll be the first person to make eye contact with you. Don't forget to greet me.

Stare into my eyes and tell me what you see. The full story of my life, how I came to be what I am, will flash through them. There's a catch, though I'm certain you expected that, is that both eyes, while projecting the same story, will show a different angle. These two perspectives will inspire mixed feelings within you. Combine them, and you'll have my story. When I'm done, I'll ask you one simple question: "What sort of man was I?"

That answer is one you'll have to decide. Some answer immediately, some take their time. It matters not to me, only that it is "correct". Nobody has found the right answer, yet, but I remain hopeful.

If you're wrong, then I can't let you leave. For now, this is a pleasant outcome at worst... but my sanity may slip eventually. Perhaps the process has already begun... I'll apologize now.

I'll hand you the Object you seek, the one that even I once sought, a vial of tears. Are they tears of sadness? Joy? That's for you to decide. My memory isn't what it used to be, but there's something special about the tears. I can't quite recall.

You'll fade from my world, and end up someplace safe - hopefully.

Good luck.

[The original note ends here. More, in different handwriting, is hastily written at the bottom]

I don't have very much time - enough to get this out, hopefully. I made a mistake. Hell, I think he made a mistake. Should have stayed. Might have been nice.

I lost. Mentally prepared for the worst, something... different happened.

Ambivalence let me go.

Said that he was tired of so few people visiting. Tired of waiting ages between visitors in his lonely little world. So he said he'd do me a "favor". He wrote down this guide so that we could find him - Ambivalence was always a rumor, and those that believed it was real knew it was a shot in the dark so they usually avoided it. The few poor saps - like me - that can guess our way through end up trapped anyway. An odd Holder, for a moment there he almost seemed to still be human.

Anyway, what he didn't tell me is that he broke the rules. I don't know that for sure, maybe this is just part of them. One thing is certain, though: now They're after me. Not in the typical way we've learned to deal with. The whole cavalry is on the march, and They're pissed. By the time anybody reads this, I'll be gone. Dead, hopefully, but I know better. I don't know what They're going to do to him. Hope he thought it was worth it.

I'm barricaded right now, about to scan and upload. I can hear them coming. If I manage to get this out, then at least I did something worthwhile. Just need to write one last part, you know what it'll be.

I wish you luck, I didn't even get the damn vial.

That vial is Object 443 of 2538. I was a man, once. Then I became a Seeker.