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A Curious Malady

I crossed the hall in a blink, and took the stairs three at time. I threw open the doors of the master bedroom and strode over to the dark bed. I pawed through the covers savagely until I found Jia's arm, and then jerked her upright with a brutal thrust.

She let out a little scream and pulled the covers to her chest. "Simon?" she whispered, blinking.

"Who are you?" I roared.

Simon of Space - a science-fiction novel by Cheeseburger Brown
Dear reading-type folks,

Alas, it has finally come to be: the free version of this science-fiction novel has been taken offline in order to make room for the hard-cover printed edition from Ephemera Bound Publishing, on sale in stores and online starting Valentine's Day, 2008.

I regret any sadness. I kept the free version available as long as I could. Please do be sure to check out the new edition! See Cheeseburger Brown.com for more information and updates.

Cheeseburger Brown

P.S. You can read more of my free fiction via my weblog or in the complete story achives.


Blogger Cheeseburger Brown decreed...

Dear all,

Sorry for the delay.

I was up north, in the wilder country. No Internet access.

I'm back now.



Mon Aug 01, 04:26:00 PM EDT  
Blogger LM decreed...

"with a determination I did feel"

Should that be "did not feel" ?

Great work as always CBB

Mon Aug 01, 04:42:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Garoo decreed...

Aw, Jeremiah's line is so cute (considering).

And now I've got to read the entry all over again remembering to picture Simon in an elephant suit :)

(I do find it odd, though, that he'd be so quick to turn against Jia. I know he's been burnt and all like Olorio says, but still, he doesn't have any evidence at all when he starts waving his gun around. I understand it's kind of the point, but I still find it a bit extreme.)

Mon Aug 01, 04:59:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous delirium of disorder decreed...

ala Monty Burns: Excellent.

Welcome back to the digitized world CBB.

A few words of praise ...
I'm hooked hooked hooked on this. I find myself looking down the page to see when the diary is pulled out and the installment concluding the same way a child sees its mother come to pull him away from Playland, a futile search to prolong the joy. Just five more minutes/paragrahs CBB!

A few critical observations ...
In reading this installment I felt our characters wrapped up at the house and headed to the hospital too neatly after such upheaval - particularly Glory and Simon ("wanna come", "ok") after she burst in and pushed Jia further when Simon had just begun to pull back.

And then Olorio came in and controlled the situation as though he had compulsion over Simon - which may be by design.

A few conspiratorial observations ....
While we can assume Glory was the one who tried to gain entry to Fell Corp, assumption has worked against us every time.

The AI in Jeremiah seems to develop trust. Nice. If true it also tells us that Simon's actions are beginning to align with Jeremiah's sought ends.

What are the chances in a realm so vast that Simon's hooker with a heart knows Nestor's fake wife?

Looking to hear more about that bullet Omar took, Glory's disappearance and reappearance , and the extent to which Jia has again been reprogrammed at the Compnay hospital. Wonder? Could an "agent" be placed in the position of Jia through the wonders of cosmetic fixers, after the failed attempt by Simon's puppeters to use a prostitute.

Mon Aug 01, 05:23:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Kumar decreed...

What in the world happened to Darrington?
Does Jeremiah have some sort of hidden ranged weapon? Or was Darrington tampered with like Omar and Jia?

Mon Aug 01, 05:30:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Cheeseburger Brown decreed...

Dear Kumar,

Um. Please see entries #1 through to the one just before this one.

Welcome aboard.



Mon Aug 01, 05:37:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Suddenly all those fleeting headaches and nose-pinches make sense...

The Nowhere Man vibe is stronger than ever -- man, I wish they hadn't cancelled that show. This fills its place nicely, though.

CBB, welcome back to so-called civilization, and thanks for thinking of us so soon after your return!

Mon Aug 01, 06:01:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

CBB, I'm glad you had the obscurity in what happened to Darrington in mind (from yer earlier comment). I wasn't certain if it was just something you hadn't quite explained properly.
As a reader I was left with the impression that Darrington did something (I thought it was attempting to knock away the gun), and then she was just down. But the someone mentioned something about poison.. so that further confused me.
It was a confusing scene, but I'm guessing that's what you intend now...
If I was reading the front to back, it likely wouldn't be an issue.

You are putting in a lot of unexplainables... which I'm guessing you'll explain... but would you care to tell whether you generally have all the details worked out in advance, or whether sometimes you just throw stuff out there and see where it leads?

I'm considering this for possibly my own eventual writing skills (or lack thereof) which I may attempt to cultivate at some point.


PS: hurry :-)

Mon Aug 01, 07:39:00 PM EDT  
Blogger J. Francis Lehman decreed...

A most enjoyable episode, CBB. One that did not really answer any questions whatsoever, all things considered.

Mon Aug 01, 08:32:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous TheCatWhisperer decreed...

CBB, Again, a wonderful tale, but this entry seemed a bit rushed, someone else mentioned that the transition from the tense situation in the bedroom, and Glory showing up, and all of a sudden being accepted, especially after how we all know how Simon felt betrayed by her...

But I'm sure that it will all become more clear in the future, maybe Simon is just soo on the edge of broken right now that those who he "knows" ar ethe only ones he feels he can trust...

Or mabe, this chapter just needs to be flushed out further.

I think all the elements are there...

Mon Aug 01, 09:52:00 PM EDT  
Blogger tee decreed...

cheese, you rock.
"I don't know what's going on here but I'm sure that if all we all just --" works fine for me, in a scattered stressful way...

great twisting googlymoogly!

Mon Aug 01, 10:11:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous matt decreed...

I think that Simon's concern for Jia overwhelmed all his other concerns at the time, other than keeping a little corner of his thoughts for Pish, so that with respect to Glory he simply thought "Pff. Whatever."

Mon Aug 01, 10:13:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous converted decreed...

Yatti Olorio = Terron Volmash?

Tue Aug 02, 01:11:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Lilaena decreed...


I checked this site two times today and still missed the fact that you'd posted two episodes at once.

After reading this one, the following one makes a lot more sense. I was sort of up for the whole "time passes" bit, but this works a bit better. :D

Tue Aug 02, 03:14:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Dave decreed...

Wow..... so many twists and turns CBB!!!! Can't wait to read the next installment!

Tue Aug 02, 08:30:00 AM EDT  
Blogger razorsmile decreed...

What are the chances in a realm so vast that Simon's hooker with a heart knows Nestor's fake wife?

The game is a lot bigger than/
you think you know/
and if you think you know/
I don't think you know/

Let's see:

- Jeremiah killed Darrington

- Glory is a higher-up in the conspiracy. That's why she wants to be close to our hero now; the game is entering a critical stage.

- there is more than one faction manipulating poor Simon.

Tue Aug 02, 03:31:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Kumar decreed...

Ever since 6/22 I've wondered about Jeremiah's functions...

...Monkey ... carefully removed Jeremiah's silver exterior and replaced it with the new blue-green carapace. Monkey delighted in pointing out various doodads beneath the robot's skin...

"What does that do?" Pish asked, sticking his finger into one of the cavities in the torso and wiggling it around.

"That's a --" began Monkey, and then squinted closer. "It's probably a --" he started again, and then frowned. "Monkey doesn't know," he admitted. "Some funny model Dad and Monkey never heard of."

It has plagued me ever since! That confounded mysterious cavity! What does it do? What else can Jeremiah do that hasn't been uncovered yet?

It's very amusing how the different characters view Jeremiah. Simon, through his exposure to Jeremiah, sees all other robots as very dumb, very limited machines. Many other characters express shock when they witness Jeremiah's autonomous behavior.
"What?" blinked Omar. "Is this the rudest robot alive?

I love these little details.

Wed Aug 03, 06:21:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

...makes you wonder if Jeremiah really IS "alive" in some sense.

Since they were introduced on the World Train, I've considered whether or not J -- or at least some element of his consciousness -- might have some common origins w/ these "human executives". I can't imagine that a detail like that would be waved in front of us and then never used again...

Also, what's up with Glory's momentary disappearance and re-appearance (just after Olorio shows up) with a "glazed look"? Was she lighting up again, or is there something more sinister going on?

Oh, the possibilities!

Thu Aug 04, 01:16:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Eddie decreed...


By the way, when the cop asked Simon if he had any enemies, he should has said "No one but Jeremiah here".

Tue Aug 30, 11:13:00 PM EDT  

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