KARARK

Karen knew she'd be disappearing tomorrow.

She pushed the heavy suitcase out into the hallway, and pulled the door to her apartment closed, one final time. Good bye mattress. Good bye sofa.

Turning, she found herself frozen in one final liminal moment

 

                -- a space between --

 

 

        Then. And now.

 

 

 

She pressed the elevator button. Everything was silent, as if in anticipation. And then the low clanking sound of the elevator chugging toward her.

Karen nervously flicked a black pom pom back and forth. This black pom pom, her keychain, back and forth, she flicked it absent-mindedly, vigorously, her hands incapable of keeping still. She could burst. But she breathed slowly, trying to calm herself.

"When are the yoga group meeting next?" she absently wondered, then checked herself.

She would not go to that yoga group ever again. Her yoga mat was on the other side of that door now, the other side of

 

 

        Then. And now.

 

 

"Of course, they have yoga mats in Melbourne, and yoga groups too," she thought to herself.

She almost laughed at the thought. "It won't be 'me' who joins one." The elevator's ding cut through her thoughts.

Once the elevator was underway, she swung the bug-out bag from her back, off her shoulder and onto the floor. She opened a ruggedized zip, and dropped the keys into the bag, the black pom disappearing. It was a solemn moment. A reverent ceremony. She's never use those keys again.

Each gesture from here on held that same characteristic.

Each step of the way from here -- she would be casting things off -- like the layers of an iceberg lettuce, or the silk wrapper layers of a cocoon, opening to release the butterfly, or moth, or wasp within.

At street level she pushed her luggage out of the building and looked up the street, then down the street.

Left or right? All of destiny floating on a knife's edge: left or right?

She closed her eyes and thought of him. The kind man. During intense moments she could always find her centre, by taking a quick breath in and a long, slow, steady, breath out, while she brought him to mind. The kind man. He had a thousand faces, and he was out there now.

She turned left and set her sights on Kings Cross. Wednesday night is quiet, most places. To find the kind man, she'd need to go somewhere with at least a little life. The Cross then.

She moves through the dusking streets, people pass her by, the camera man has chosen to blur them, and Karen is deep in thought. A few more steps and then -- here -- pause!

I want you to see this in the background.

Karen doesn't see it, she walks right past it, but it's there:

A large sign, white letters on a field of green, behind the full length glass windows of a shuttered business, another casualty of covid.

Sign reads:

Everything Must Go

And we continue toward kings cross.

--==**()**==--

In many ways Karen was a good judge of character. Though, for those same reasons, she was also a lightning rod, able to expose the worst things in people around her. But she fixed her mind on that one image, and she knew she would be alright.

Some of this talent -- it is possible Karen learned from her father. Peter has a natural charm, a twinkling, disarming character, and a wit so sharp it could slice a mouse, and at any moment, he knew how to switch on a kind of electro magnetism. That's what it was about Peter. If he was a villain, in the Marvel Cinematic Universal sense of the word, he'd be called something like "The Electro Magnet." His quirky, genius professor type had a sharp edge to it, like he would be perfectly at home cackling menacingly while patting a white long haired cat. But in reality, it was all down to the vocal fry. As he spoke to you, he dropped his voice, lowering both in tone and volume, drawing you closer, making you feel like a wise person is drawing you into their confidence. In his role we'd need to cast some athletic former tennis coach perhaps, and dress them as a typical middle aged accountant, software developer, or other member of the clerical caste.

But Karen's own, infinitely, infinitesimally subtle grift was nothing like her fathers.

A few years earlier she'd moved in for a short while with a tinder respondent from Alaska. He was a genuinely nice and interesting person. A thinking person's acquaintance. She was immediately comfortable with him. Greg reports that she was very talkative - very good at externalising her thought patterns -- processing things out loud -- but also -- within minutes of meeting him she borrowed 100 dollars off him, which she did pay back, but the interesting thing was how it just seemed like the most natural thing in the world. She moved into his house without asking, she just -- didn't leave. Greg sees it as predictable - obvious - that she would've used this natural gift during her final escape. She's soon land on her feet, if she did this for even a short while.

That night in kings cross she was an awkward site, with her heavy suitcase, a pillow case of other belonging, and bug-out bag, and jacket. Various people approached her to offer help. In a public place, these were consistently people who consider themselves good people. And when Matthew approached she almost sighed, her relief was that complete.

There you are, she thought, marvelling that The Kind Man had found another face.

There's no reason to think that the man that offered her a place to stay that night -- Matthew -- was anything but a gentleman.

On the day she went missing a different stranger, Steve, picked her up. Again -- despite being jumpy as hell -- she succeeded at putting him at his ease. The funny thing and relatable thing is that he thinks he put her at her ease, by helping her out. The truth is, this guy Steve is, to me, an actual angel.

One of the mysteries we hope to uncover as we look at Karen's final day -- is whether there was any man involved in the story who was NOT a Saint.

We open on Kiki’s delivery service. We see Kiki, wide-eyed, flying to a new city, a stranger all alone, unrecognised, torn between excitement and fear, embarking on the big adventure.

Lengthy essay on “The Hero’s Journey”

List after list of examples.

Our whole society sells the idea of the hero setting out for strange lands.

Frodo? Karen.

Luke Skywalker? Karen

Dorothy? Karen

Harry Potter? Maverick? Neo? Karen

Karen is the hero with a thousand faces.

——

RENAME - not karen

Karalinius.

Karlotta - Karolingus - Katryne - Kateray

Kattaras

Karattakus.

Kratokus

Krantosty

Karal

Karla kenella

Kanthelleray

Thargomindah

Kansas

 

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