Jekyll’s Lessons 3: Crowds

 

Well guys, we’re on our third bit of advice, so I guess that you could say that three’s a crowd.

Lame jokes aside, let’s get into the lesson for today.

While you may think it’s a good idea to run away to protect everyone you know, you can do it just as well (and expose yourself a little less) by just keeping your mouth shut.  Sure, there are some risks, but running isn’t going to draw him away from your family or friends.  If he wants to kill them, he can still do it, whether you run or not.

But no matter whether you want to run or not, it’s a good idea not to play lone wolf.  Ever.  See, staying in crowds, or in large groups (of the blind, of course—that they’re blind is absolutely essential) can, apart from keeping your mind off of the Slender Man (covered in a later post), keep you physically safe as well.  Let me explain.

People who don’t know about him usually can’t see him.  In a large crowd, chances are that not many people are going to know about him.  He doesn’t often seem fond of revealing his presence to the blind, preferring more subtle approaches.  This is just a guess and just my own personal appearance, but he doesn’t like to go after more than just a small group at once.  When was the last time you heard of him spontaneously appearing to a huge group?  You’d think that’d be on the news, wouldn’t it?  He tends to stay invisible to the blind.

And if he does show up?  Most people aren’t going to see, notice, or recognize him without prior knowledge.  And why would he draw attention to himself?  Again, he’d reveal himself a bit too much by disemboweling someone in the middle of a crowd.  Crowds, for whatever reason, tend to keep him away.

And if they do see him, well, that’s maybe M’s third rule (the one I trust most, though it’s probably not completely reliable) at work—keep your eyes open.  If he’s locked into this plane by people constantly looking at him and keeping him from planeshifting or slenderwalking or whatever you kids these days call it.  Maybe even if they can’t see him, that still works.  I don’t really know.  All I know is that, for me, it works.

Oh, and if you’re in a crowd and he’s nearby?  DON’T RUN.  That’s exactly what he wants you to do.  He wants to get you alone.  Isolated.  Away from the crowds where no one will notice you screaming.  Instead, stay calm.  Keep a level head.  That’s the most important thing.  Stay with a group.  Convince them to come home or let you spend the night if you have to (although that’s a bit riskier and might put them in danger…you’ll just have to gamble).

Whatever you do, DON’T PANIC.

It’s the worst possible thing you can do.

-Jekyll

Hyde’s Musings #1: Lost Time

 

Hello again, friends.  The Pretentious Punster has returned!  You are all well, I trust?

How I wish that rhetorical question could be answered with an honest “yes,” for I know that none of us are well, or can ever be truly well again.  But I’m rambling, aren’t I?  I’m here for a purpose, so why beat around the metaphorical bush?

You see, I have quite a curious little mind (thanks to Jekyll’s overthinking), and I often ponder the greater mysteries that Jekyll quite frankly doesn’t care about.  Allow me, for a moment, to talk a bit about Lost Time.

Do you all remember the inability to remember?  I trust that you recall the mistrust of self that comes with a lack of recollection.  Perhaps you have never experienced it yourself, and remember it solely from the tales of old, in which hours, days, weeks, or even months would disappear from one’s head.  But that is specifically what makes me curious: no one ever seems to find the time to lose it anymore.  No recent revelations of missing hours spring to mind.

Why should this be?  Why are we so immune to his effects?  I have no answers, but I have my theories.

Theory #1: We have simply become prepared enough to prevent it.  Knowledge is our metaphorical pen to combat his sword.  If we are prepared for lost time, we can recognize when it happens and prevent it from happening in the first place.  It is natural selection at its finest: we have simply developed our “sixth sense” to the point that we have erected mental barriers as a defense to prevent it.

Theory #2: This theory relies on the theory that lost time is due to the Breaking process.  When one is under the Dapper Businessman’s control, they are simply unaware of anything and consequently lose time.  Why does this mean that lost time has been lost?  Well, it means that he simply has enough willing volunteers that he does not need as much extra assistance.  As a tie-in to Theory #1, only the mentally weak or those willing enough to join him in the first place are in his employ, and they are losing either no time at all, or have no time at all of their own to lose.

Both of these theories assume that the Dapper Businessman works both subtly and directly.  While stalking relies on his target noticing him, and evisceration or disembowelment are perhaps the most direct path he can take, some processes rely on his target’s complete obliviousness.  Lost time is part of this, and is likely related to the Breaking process.  While I do not believe that “hallowing” is an appropriate term, it is this process that I am referring to.  Once he has Broken a target, they become a mere puppet whose strings he can yank; a toy that is barely a step above an inanimate object.  However, even if this theory is true, there are, of course, exceptions.  Some targets he has Broken resist it, and are in a constant state of semi-consciousness, aware enough to know that they’re under his control, but unaware enough to have any control of their own.

Theory #3: He simply does not do so anymore, due to his constantly changing nature (which I plan on elaborating on in a future post).

Those are my theories.  Any others are greatly appreciated.  Discuss, please, for I’m sure everyone else is as eager to pick your brain as I am.

Good Luck and Godspeed,

-Hyde

Close Encounters of the Thin Kind

 

So naturally, you’re probably curious as to how exactly I went from “Paranoid Psycho” to “Paranoid Victim.”  And I suppose I can at least share that much, considering that it’s one of the bigger mistakes I’ve made, and if I’m going to be making mistakes, the least I can do is let you know about them so that you can learn from them.

Like I said, I kept a notebook where I wrote down hourly journals, noting anything odd.  Well, about a week in, there were a few entries I hadn’t remembered writing.  Then a few more.  Just enough that I was convinced that my mind wasn’t just blanking on them.  Between that and the hacking cough I had picked up (which I could have attributed to flu season otherwise), I was sure that I’d see the Slender Man soon.

As a result, I wasn’t really surprised when I did.  I go on a morning jog every Saturday.  It’s a HABIT (oh, look, a pun!) I got into years ago, and it’s just part of my life now.  Anyways, that particular morning was foggy.  It put me on edge, but that was probably a good thing.  So I was tense, half-expecting to see the Slender Man.  And I did.

So I was running on a trail through some trees.  Dumb move, I know, but that’s where I’m used to running.  Force of HABIT, I guess (get used to it.  If a joke is worth telling once, it’s worth telling again).  But anyway, I was running through the trees in the fog.  Out of the corner of my eye, I kept thinking I saw something in the trees.  Whenever I turned to look, there was nothing.  You know how fog usually dissipates when the sun comes out?  Well, maybe it’s because the sun wasn’t coming out, but either way, the fog kept getting thicker.  Like, incredibly thick.  I could barely make out things 100 feet away.  I was only seeing my turns after I had already passed them and run off the trail.  The fog was absolutely suffocating.  I was completely lost, and that’s hard to do on a route you’ve taken about once a week for the past few years.

When I say the fog was suffocating, I’m not embellishing.  It was so dense that it was hard to inhale.  My clothes were drenched.  So much cold damp moisture closing in around me.  I froze up, trying to find my way and catch my breath.  That’s when I first saw him.  At first, I thought he was a tree.  He blended in with the rest in the fog.  But as I saw the strange unearthly motion of those unnaturally long limbs, I knew right away that it was the Slender Man.

Remember how I said I wasn’t surprised when I saw him?  Yeah, that doesn’t mean that I wasn’t completely terrified.  I can only describe the encounter as the worst feeling ever.  My body just completely locked up.  There was this tingling feeling, like a faint electric current running through my body, paralyzing it.  There was another strange feeling, but I don’t know whether to describe it as “so hot that it feels cold” or “so cold it burns.”  And then, the whispers.  I felt like someone was speaking directly into my brain, but I couldn’t make anything out.  Just a mass of feelings and emotions I’d never experienced before put into indecipherable whispers and spoken directly into my mind.

He walks up to within ten feet of me.  He might have been close enough to reach out and touch me, but I’m not sure.  He just stared—yes, stared, even without a face—at me for a while.  I couldn’t completely tell what he was saying (I’m assuming that the whispers were his “voice”), but I could feel his message clearly.  He was toying with me.  He wanted to break my mentally before he broke me physically.  And you know what?  He almost did, right then and there.  But before I had a complete breakdown, he gave me this weird head-tilt before leaving.  I’m not sure how he left.  My vision was sort of swimming at that point (don’t think I actually blacked out, though I came close), and the fog didn’t help.  One second he was there, overbearing and overwhelming, and the next, he was just gone.  I could move again.  The fog was even starting to clear a bit.

Naturally, I celebrated my newfound mobility by staggering off the path and throwing up for a minute or two.  It’s impossible to experience something like that and not feel sick.

I found my way back pretty quickly, armed with some new knowledge.  That knowledge was that it never hurts to be too prepared.  Make sure you’re ready before you encounter him.  I was expecting him, but I still wasn’t mentally prepared for my first encounter.  I had expected to glimpse him from a distance.  Some people get that lucky, I suppose.  Others (like me), don’t, and get a face full of faceless right off the back.  So don’t take stupid risks that bring you closer to danger (like running through a foggy forest), and be prepared for anything.

Well, I suppose that I’ve told you all there is to tell about how I met the Slender Man.  So now you know.  And knowing is half the battle.

Jekyll’s Lessons 2: Notebooks

 

Okay, okay, I know what you’re thinking.  This sounds like a terribad idea.  Notebooks are what drive you crazy, not keep you sane.  But it’s not what you’re thinking about.  Hear me out, here.

You want to know how I first realized it was all real?  Because I was watching for lost time.  I’d keep a notebook that, every hour, I would write a brief description of my last hour in.  Normally it was something extremely short, like “10-11 AM: in class” or “3-4 PM: sat on my lazy ass in front of the computer.”  Stuff like that.  It took maybe three seconds to write.  And if I lost time, I’d know right away if I had.  In fact, maybe just focusing on what I did with my time prevented me from losing some.  Thankfully, though, I did lose at least some time.  I say “thankfully” because that way I actually knew I was being stalked and not just paranoid.  One of the best weapons you can have is being certain.  A known known is much preferable to a known unknown.

Keeping a notebook early on is key to survival.  If you’re not being stalked, no problem.  You’re not losing time, and the worst that happens is people look at you a bit weird and you lose maybe a minute of your day writing down what happens.  But if you’re losing time, you’ll know right away.  On top of that, you can also track your sanity by your handwriting (check how later entries compare to earlier ones, and watch out for handwriting that isn’t yours).  If you end up completely flipping your shit, you’ll also probably end up subconsciously doodling all sorts of creepy stuff all over the notebooks.  But at least you’ll be aware of your mental state and how you’re using your time.  Later on, it can become either an obsession or an anchor (I’ll explain both of those in due time), but if it becomes an obsession, stop writing in them right away.

That’s today’s lesson: notebooks are to the stalked as towels are to hitchhikers.  Use ‘em and don’t lose ‘em…unless, of course, they become problematic.  In which case, lose them as quickly as possible.

-Jekyll

Testimony/Jekyll’s Lessons 1: Quick Thinking

 

I’m sure you’re all wanting a bit of backstory. How I came to be stalked by the Slender Man in the first place. Well, I’m not going to make up some sort of crap about how I was stalked by him for ten years and that I had nightmares about him as a kid. No, when I was a kid, my nightmares were about the Big Bad Wolf knocking on my door and saying “little pig, little pig, let me come in.” Also, I know what you’re thinking and fuck you, it was terrifying when I was four.

But anyway, I’ve been involved for about a good old earth year now. My friend showed me Marble Hornets late last summer, and it scared the shit out of me in the best way possible. I’d never really seen any horror movies before, but I loved this. Of course, I had no clue what the fuck was going on (by about Entry #18, he refused to even say anything whenever I asked him what the hell was happening), but he explained the Slender Man when we finished Entry #26 (back in those days, there wasn’t a second season and we actually had to wait for a long enough time between the entries to justify the complaining). Naturally, I looked him up. Found the Something Awful thread, found the subforum on Unfiction, found the Slender Nation, found the TV Tropes Page, found EverymanHYBRID, found TribeTwelve, found the blogs.

A few months later, found myself in a world of trouble.

I heard about the Tulpa Effect, and I laughed at it a bit, even if it was a nice theory. But then, as all of this tends to do, it started feeling real—too real. It started with the dreams. Clearly just my subconscious messing with me, latching onto a new obsession. I didn’t think much of it, considering that I’d also had dreams about Megatron and the Cowardly Lion from the Wizard of Oz (dressed, for some reason, in biker leather) showing up at my dorm and having dinner with my family (because they were there too for some reason). Started seeing things out of the corner of my eye. Again, just my subconscious messing with me. Got a cold and a terrible cough. Now, that was enough to make me suspicious. I knew it was coincidence. But I also overthink things. It’s what kept me alive. What worked for sure? What didn’t? How would I recognize his hallowed/agents/proxies/whatever? How would I avoid becoming one? How do I keep everyone around me from being dragged into this, and if someone does get dragged in, how do I keep them alive?

That’s the key to staying alive: having a plan. Wait, no, that’s actually the worst way to try staying alive. People with no plan can at least wing it when things go wrong. The key to staying alive is having plans. Plural. Multiple. Every corner, every angle, ever fucking last possibility must be covered. You’re safe because you’re on the roof? Well the Slender Man must also be safe, because he’s up there with you. Think you don’t have to worry about Revenants because they don’t exist? Tough. Reach was loyal to the Slender Man to the end, the revelation was a lie, and there’s a superpowered human ringing your doorbell. What now, chucklefuck? Laughing off Breaker and H(a)unting for having multiple Slender Men? Think fast, douchefag: there’s a whole army of them and they’re all coming after you. No matter how convinced you are that it’s not going to happen, there’s one thing you have to keep in mind: it might. And survival all depends on whether or not you keep that might in mind.

I’ll be going over some strategies in the future. Keep in mind that these are personal strategies, and therefore nothing more than good suggestions. I have one rule and one rule only: the Slender Man is unpredictable, and what works for me may not work for you. And vice versa, of course. What works for you may not work for me.

Well, I think that’s about all you need to know for right now about how I got involved in all of this. I’ll elaborate more on specific points later, but I don’t want these posts to get too long. I know how much everyone hates having to read long posts.

-Jekyll

Now You Shall Know Me Again

I suppose that, since Jekyll has introduced himself inadequately, it is up to Yours Truly to, in addition to myself, acquaint you with him properly.

Good day.  My name is Of No Consequence, though my pseudonym is Hyde.  Jekyll’s name, incidentally, is also Of No Consequence, a fact attributable to the fact that we are, in fact, the same person.  Jekyll wishes to elaborate in a later post, so I shall leave the explanations of why this simultaneous duality and singularity exists within us to him.

So who is Jekyll?  And who is Hyde?  I, my friends, am Hyde: the amiable, polite, and (dare I be so conceited to say it?) clever half.  Jekyll, on the other hand…well, perhaps it would make more sense coming from him.

Jekyll here.  Just clarifying quickly that Hyde’s also the stupid one.  Or maybe just the one who doesn’t overthink things, which in my opinion makes him the stupid one.  I’ll analyze every angle, brainstorm every theory, and do everything that I can to keep myself (and through my advice, all of you) alive as long as possible.  Admittedly, I’m also a cocky, almost downright unlikable prick.  An “arrogant bastard of a nerd,” if you will.

And now, since I’m sure you’re obviously seeking Hyde at this point, I make my triumphant return.  I exist largely because, at times, Jekyll needs to relieve the stress of being who he is.  An deterrent to the constant pressure.  My approach is different than his.  You’ll see both approaches in time.

Now, not only is our name Of No Consequence.  We reside in the rural town of Of No Consequence, Trivial in continental America, though we are currently attending college in the more urban Undisclosed, Trivial.  We are approximately 20 years old, though a specific number shall be withheld.  Frustratingly vague, I’m sure, but I’m afraid that we cannot elaborate due to Jekyll’s rampant paranoia.

But please, don’t be a stranger because of that.  Jekyll may not trust people, but I assure you that I do.  Comment, and let us become more acquainted.  After all, despite my name, I carry no cane, and if I did, I would certainly not savagely beat you with it.

-Hyde

Help Me Help You Help Us All

 

All right, chums, let’s do this….

What’s up, everyone? I’m Jekyll. Or at least that’s my pretentious handle, because you evidently need one of those. I’m not regretting this name decision at all. Cool-sounding. Symbolic. I personally think it suits me well: a mad scientist sort who willingly embraces the concept of a complete monster before growing to regret it. Okay, so maybe it’s not a perfect symbolism, but it sounds cool. That’s enough in my book. Either way, let’s just hope our stories don’t end the same way. Because as we all know (and I’m about to be a complete douche to anyone who is ignorant enough to know nothing about literature), the monster consumes Jekyll in the end.

Whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing, though, I’m not talking about my own personal Mr. Hyde. No, I’m talking about a monster without, not a monster within. I’m talking about the Slender Man.

Yeah, you heard me. Oh, no! He said the forbidden name! Whatever shall we do? Let us all convince him to come up with his own clever moniker. Come on, guys, he’s not fucking Voldemort. What, is his name so scary now that we can’t bring ourselves to say it? And what’s up with the nicknames? Is it because of the Tulpa Effect? Believe me, if the Tulpa Effect is real, that’s hurting more than it’s helping. Let’s all call him Jack Skellington or Slim Jim instead. Now nobody’s going to be able to watch The Nightmare Before Christmas or eat a stick of jerky without thinking of him. Good job, guys. Real great going. </sarcasm>. And what’s with the Slendershit/Slenderdouche/Slenderprick/etc.? I swear, I will strangle the next person who uses that. Do you think you’re trying to be clever? Because you’re not doing too good of a job. Do you maybe think you’re a big boy, calling it names behind its back? Do you think that if you call him that, it’ll somehow make him weaker? Newsflash: it won’t. And it’s just fucking annoying.

Besides, it’s just more polite to use his real name. Or the closest thing to a real name we know. Even Eldritch Abominations have feelings, you know.

Okay, so you’ve got your nicknames for him. Maybe it’s because you’re afraid to use his name, in which case, see above. Maybe it’s because you feel like you’re “sticking it to the (Slender) Man” by giving him demeaning nicknames, in which case, see above. But maybe it’s because you’re “protecting the blind” so that someone who just happens to stumble across your blog doesn’t find out who it is and get involved. But that’s a flimsy excuse. If someone finds your blog, chances are that they already know about the Slender Man. They’re beyond saving. If he’s after them, he’ll make his move, and if he’s not, they’re lucky.

Oh, and for you poor saps who don’t know about the Slender Man but have somehow stumbled into this interconnected clusterfuck of insanity, well, sorry. But it’s too late to turn back now. Keep reading. This blog will probably save your life. For starters: he’s tall, slender (surprise!—though, surprisingly, not necessarily an actual man), dressed in a business suit, faceless (or maybe everyone just sees his face differently (or maybe he’s faceless to almost everyone now because that’s how we expect to see his face)), obsessed with killing (or maybe just abducting (or even just stalking)) children (0r maybe college-age students (or maybe both)), placing organs in plastic bags (or…not?), repelled (or attracted?) by a symbol that looks like a circle with an X through it, chaotic (or maybe neutral (or maybe even lawful) evil (or neutral (or even good?))…okay, fuck it. I have no idea what exactly the fuck the Slender Man even really is. Tall. Skinny. Business suit. Faceless (probably). And he will drive you insane with his mere presence and (eventually, probably) kill you.

But it’s okay that I don’t know. No one else does either. I think it’s because he’s constantly changing. But there are some things that always seem to remain the same. Some things you can prevent. Some ways to increase your chances of survival. Hell, M (if you’re here, I assume you’re already familiar enough with The Tutorial that I don’t even have to link it) has been on the run for over a full year now, and he’s still alive, even with his completely useless rules. Like I said, this blog will probably save your life, because I’m going to be doing what he did. Only better. Yeah, I’m a cocky, arrogant bastard. Deal with it.

See, M was sort of thrust into this unexpectedly. I was thrust into it too, and I’ll admit that I didn’t really see it coming. But I was prepared anyway. I’m what some people would call “genre savvy.” I’m the sort of person who comes up with zombie survival plans for fun. I know how to survive a horror movie. I’m pretty sure that I can survive the Slender Man.

“But Jekyll!” I hear those of you who are dead say from beyond the grave. “We thought we could, too!” Yeah, you did. But guess what? You didn’t. You’ve all screwed up somehow. Whether it’s overconfidence or not accounting for other factors or thinking that you’re somehow special, everyone’s fucked up somehow. I’ve read your blogs. I’ve learned from your mistakes. And now you can all learn from mine.

Well…that’s assuming I make any.

…Leerooooooooooy…nnnnnJenkiiiiiiiiiiiiins!

-Jekyll