You are at the library. Which book would you like to read?
“Excuse me, I think you’ll find that that book is awfully boring and bad,” says an old man standing behind you. “Jeffis Kleen is a terrible author, and that’s one of his worst books. I should know; I’ve read them all. You see, Jeffis Kleen is my father. I am Leonardo Kleen.”
“Might I suggest another book? I have a very special one in mind for you, as you seem like a very special reader. Yes, you certainly do have a charm about you. An undeniable aura. You see, I don’t give this book out to just anyone. It’s been in our collection for 100 years, and everyone who has read it has either thrown themselves off a bridge or become president. Now I am giving it to you...”
“Not much is known about the man who wrote it. It appears to be a diary of sorts, notable for the fact that it serves as the only existing historical account of the events which it purports to describe. Events that appear to have greatly impacted the author, and indeed, the world itself.”
He hands you the book, and you immediately notice that it smells strangely of garlic. Your hands tremble as you sit down at a nearby desk.
June the fifth, eighteen hundred and ninety-six,
You arrive today in the village of L---- after a lengthy journey from the capital, where you are a student at the University of K----. The focus of your studies is science, man’s fatal blow to God. You pride yourself on your skepticism of the supernatural, and wear it proudly on your person in the form of one of those Jesus fish patches that has feet and the word “Darwin” inside of it.
The purpose of your visit to L----? A study of the rich botanical offerings of the region, focusing primarily on the ones that smell really good. You will keep this journal during your stay to document your findings, as well as anything of note that might occur. You do not plan to stay long, though this has nothing to do with the stories you heard as a child about this region of F----, your beloved motherland. Stories of mysterious creatures that haunt the land and know not death. None of this scares you now, as you debark the train and leave the station. You are a man of reason. A scientist. You know that every phenomenon in this world can be explained with science. Even slugs.
“Hello, kind visitor,” says an old villager standing outside the modest train station. “May I offer you a ride into town on my donkey? He is a fast donkey. Most donkeys are slow, but mine is extremely speedy. You know why? He is afraid. We are all afraid here. Even donkeys, who are the dumbest of all God’s creatures, can tell there’s something wrong with this land. Something terrible and rotten and extremely pointy.”
“God help you.”
“Oh, God is dead? That’s great news. One less thing for me to worry about. But you should be warned, my friend. There are things worth fearing more than God. Now, how about that donkey ride, eh?”
“I usually charge twenty gromels, but it’s on the house if you can teach my idiot son how to kiss. My son has never kissed before in his life, and he is a complete and total embarrassment. Please teach him how to make out so I no longer have to wake up every day and have my first thought be, ‘My son can’t mack with the best of ’em.’”
“This is my donkey. His name is Waterfalls. Please, climb aboard, and Waterfalls and I will take you into town.”
“I am the old villager’s son. I spend my days wandering the countryside with my dog, and I can’t kiss for crap. Kind stranger, will you teach me how to do the lip kindness I have heard so much about?”
“Wonderful,” says the old villager’s son. “I can practice it on my dog. Now, how do I do it? Kissing, I mean?”
The old villager’s son kisses the dog. Congratulations. You taught the villager’s son how to kiss.
“Thank you so much, kind stranger!” exclaims the old villager. “It is important to know how to make out. Otherwise you might have a make-out accident and die. All right, come with me!”
The old villager lets you off at the village inn and rides off into the fading light of day. Finally, you have arrived! You pick up your suitcase and approach the inn.
You set off down the path into town, suitcase in hand. Off to the side you notice a particularly glorious botanical specimen, and you set about preserving it in your journal.
Location: On the side of the road
Smells: Pretty good
“Wow,” you think to yourself. “Science is awesome!”
But the moment you lift your head up from your journal, you notice something deeply disconcerting. A sudden fog has consumed the path ahead. You have the strange feeling that you are being watched. A chill runs down your spine. Your palms sweat. The hair on the back of your neck stands on end, then your arm hair, chest hair, and pubic hair. Pretty soon all of your hair is standing on end, and it looks really weird. Three of your teeth fall out. Then, from behind, a voice whispers in your ear...
Oh, what a horrible sight! Standing before you is a terrifying cloaked woman with fangs as long and as sharp as knives. You stare wide-eyed into the face of the wretched creature, clutching your Darwin patch, utterly petrified.
“There’s something I should tell you, and it’s that I’m a vampire!” she roars in your face, her freezing breath the rank odor of putrid flesh. “And now I’m going to do the vampire thing and eat all your blood! How about that, huh? How do you feel about that? Probably not very good!”
“Oh, yeah. I forgot. Bye.”
And with that, the vampire retreats into the forest, never to be seen again.
You Used Science To Prove That Vampires Don’t Exist!
“Done already? Well, I suppose you used science to prove that vampires don’t exist. Well done! Science really is fucking awesome.”
You enter the inn and are greeted by a gentleman in a top hat.
“Oh, hello there, traveler!” he says to you through a swirl of pipe smoke. “My name is Frederic, and I am the innkeeper here. What brings you to our humble village?”
“Science? That’s great. I fucking love science!”
“Oh, just curious. Many people are afraid to visit L---. Probably has something to do with all the mysterious deaths that’ve been happening out here lately.”
“It’s funny. Many people are afraid to visit L--- because of all the mysterious deaths that’ve been happening out here lately. But you don’t seem scared at all. Good for you!”
Frederic leads you upstairs to your room. It’s a simple dwelling, but it will do. You notice the previous occupant’s belongings are still scattered about.
“Well, here you go. It’s getting late, and I can imagine you’re tired. I’ll let you get some sleep. If you need anything, I’ll be in the parlor room smoking my pipe. I hope you enjoy your stay, and don’t get killed!”
“That’s what I thought.”
The vampire sinks her fangs into your neck and sucks every last drop of blood out of your body.
You Got Killed By A Vampire!
“Oh, boy. You got killed by a vampire, didn’t you? That’s a shame. It reminds me of a godawful novel my father, Jeffis Kleen, once wrote called The Dog Who Got Hit By A Car On Jupiter And The Car Was A Honda Element. What an awful idea for a book. Much worse than this one you’re reading. Why don’t you give it another shot? Try not to get killed this time.”
“Well, we seem to have had a rash of make-out accidents in the last several months that have unfortunately claimed the lives of several villagers.”
What do you want to write?
“Oh, yes, terrible make-out accidents. People have had their blood sucked dry from their necks. Their heads ripped off. Just terrible stuff. The authorities are calling them make-out accidents, but some of us have other suspicions...”
“I’d rather not say. Besides, it’s pure speculation. Regardless, your arrival comes at a most convenient time! You see, until recently all of our rooms were filled, but one gentleman disappeared about two days ago and hasn’t been seen since. You can stay in his room! Follow me.”
“Certainly that may have been on the old villager’s mind. It’s on everyone’s mind; every day it seems that another person turns up with their blood sucked dry from their neck. Their head ripped off. The authorities are calling them make-out accidents, but some of us have other suspicions...”
The desk in your room has several of the previous occupant’s belongings on it. Which would you like to inspect?
A photo of the previous occupant, perhaps? You wonder what might’ve happened to him that he would leave all his belongings behind.
A photograph of a chicken. What an odd thing for a gentleman to carry around with him. Perhaps he was particularly fond of chickens. Perhaps this particular chicken was special to him.
A single feather. How peculiar.
Very good. This is what it would look like if he were a bird.
This is your room. What do you want to do?
You wrote your name 10 times. Well done.
You wrote “SCIENCE IS AWESOME” in all caps. Great.
You climb into bed and gaze at the moon in the night sky. Now it is time to sleep. What kind of dream do you want to have?
You dream that you are buried under a pile of pugs. It is a good dream.
You dream that you are in a dimly lit ballroom. In the distance, you can hear someone saying your name.
Suddenly, a face with terrifying fangs emerges from the darkness and hisses in your face:
“Science is not as awesome as you think it is.”
You dream about this man. In the dream, you kiss his bare shoulders while he delivers monologues from Shakespeare’s histories. It is very confusing and erotic.
You roll out of bed and put your clothes on. Time to start the day.
You meet Frederic the innkeeper on your way out the door.
“Oh, hello there. How were your dreams?”
“Interesting. I always have the same dream, and it is a nightmare about the moon. Anyway, have a splendid day, and try not to die in a make-out accident.”
Ah, what a glorious day it is! What do you want to do?
You approach a couple of locals who are standing nearby. They seem friendly enough.
You approach another perfectly affable-looking gentleman.
Ah, yes, the local youth. Surely these youngsters won’t shy away from conversation.
So much for chatting with the locals. Now what do you want to do?
Your stroll takes you to the edge of town, where two roads diverge. Which path do you want to take?
The left path leads you down a country road lined with trees. A fog has come in, making it difficult to tell where it is leading.
At the end of the road, you reach the edge of a lake. Suddenly, you hear a splashing noise coming from the murky water.
“Oh, my!” you exclaim. “A manatee! What a joy. I’ve always wanted to see one of these spectacular creatures!”
You and the manatee swim together, your bodies circling each other as you glide through the water, rehearsing an innate choreography of beast and man. You feel a deeper connection to the natural world than ever before. The experience is so fulfilling, so completely life-changing, that you almost forget to come up for air.
But you surface to find a horrible sight! From across the water approaches that terrifying creature from stories of yore: a vampire!
“Yes, I am a vampire,” she says. “I just used the manatee to trap you. And it worked. It always works. People love swimming with manatees. They’re beautiful creatures. No one ever wants to swim with vampires. I mean, look at me. I’m horrifying. But just once, I wish I didn’t have to pretend to be a manatee in order to get someone to swim with me. Vampires like having a swim buddy too. Anyway, it was nice swimming with you, but now I’m going to kill you. Sorry!”
You Got Killed By A Vampire!
“Let me guess: You died? Oh, well. At least you didn’t have to read my father Jeffis Kleen’s 2,000-page trilogy about a cocker spaniel who gets hit by a used Nissan Sentra on Neptune, Venus, and Mercury. Believe me, it is not worth your time.”
You continue strolling and eventually arrive at a farmer’s home.
“Hello, traveler,” says the farmer. “This is my family. Or what’s left of it, at least. You see, my wife and I used to have 20 kids, but they keep disappearing and then turning up a couple days later with all the blood sucked out of ’em. Make-out accidents, they’re calling them. You just missed Philip. He was the only son I had left.”
“Goddammit, you see what I’m talking about? We just lost our last two kids. Where the hell did they go? Aw, shit. They were here a second ago. What the heck is going on? On the bright side, whenever one of our kids disappears, another chicken wanders onto our farm. But we’d really rather have our kids than a couple free chickens.”
“Well, I guess I should’ve seen this coming. Looks like my wife just disappeared too. Now I’m all alone and got no one to keep me company except you, these apples, and a mysteriously increasing number of chickens. You gotta help me, friend! There’s something really freaky going on around here!”
“I fucking love science. But some things are so freaky, not even science can explain them. Best of luck to you, friend.”
You come to a home that is surrounded by all kinds of wonderful plant life. A man greets you as you arrive. He is holding two chickens.
“Hello,” he says. “How can I help you?”
“Why, sure! That’s just fantastic. Say, take all the time you need. I’ll just be around back, holding my chickens and staring at the ground like a normal man!”
You walk into the garden and immediately find a very rare specimen that smells incredible.
Location: Chicken man’s garden
“This botanical study is off to a great start,” you think to yourself. But something strange catches your attention: a distant noise coming from the middle of the field.
As you leave the farmer’s house, you notice a peculiar sight: chickens walking single file into the woods.
As night falls, you follow the chickens all the way to the entrance of an unmarked building at the edge of town. “Is this the structure that the previous occupant described in his journal?” you ask yourself. But this thought is interrupted by a terrifying sound coming from behind you. It is the sound of an impossibly loud burp.
“I believe you’ve been staying in my room at the village inn,” says the terrifying figure as he stares you down with glowing red eyes. “You know you shouldn’t be out here this late. You might have a...what are they calling it again? A make-out accident?”
He lets out an awful squeal of laughter and reaches out to grab you!
With the red-eyed man on your heels, you dash into the building and down the steps into what appears to be a set of underground tunnels. Which way do you want to go?
You race around the corner, sprinting as fast as you can. Your heart is pounding, and you can hear the sound of your pursuer’s footsteps echoing through the tunnel, but you can’t tell where they’re coming from. You arrive at another fork. Which way do you want to go?
You whirl around the corner and come to a sudden stop. There in front of you is the red-eyed man.
“Perhaps if you had read my journal a little more closely you would’ve known how to escape,” says the man. “But now you are mine. All mine.”
The man pierces your neck with his razor-sharp fangs and drains you of all your blood.
You Got Killed By A Vampire
“What a shame that you had to die so close to the end. Well, it’s not too late to give it another shot. I only wish it were too late for my father to write another book, but he has one coming out soon about a hatchback and a dachshund on Jupiter, and I don’t have to tell you how it ends.”
You take off through the tunnel, heart racing and pulse pounding, running for your life. You arrive at another fork in the tunnel. Which way do you want to go?
Again, the tunnel splits off in two different directions. Which one will you choose?
You’re close; you can feel it. But so is your pursuer. In fact, he’s right behind you. Which way do you go now?
You made it!
But before you reach the top of the stairs, the red-eyed man grabs your ankle and pulls you back.
“The others will enjoy feasting upon you!” he cries. “Usually it takes a while for that chicken man to come bring us fresh blood because he is a slow and stupid human, but tonight you will be our appetizer!”
You scream in terror as the red-eyed man hoists you over his head and carries you out into the dusk. But just as you exit the tunnel, there is a sudden burst of sound, and the two of you fall to the ground.
Someone has slain the man who was chasing you! But who?
“Greetings. I am the village priest. Usually I just do priest things, but certain circumstances have forced me to become a vampire slayer. In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a ton of vampires in this town. It’s really annoying.”
You scoff at this.
“Yeah? Then who are they?”
You turn to find a group of masked figures approaching through the fog.
“They were the locals. But they all got turned into vampires. Chicken vampires.”
“Most vampires change into bats, but these ones change into chickens. They’re chicken vampires.”
“It’s not gross,” says one of the vampires. “It’s just the way we are.”
You follow the noise into the field and are shocked to discover the man with the chickens standing in the middle of the field wearing a large chicken skull on his head and making clucking sounds. Taking care not to be seen, you watch him from behind some wheat stalks.
“Oh, great ones who cluck at the moon,” he screams. “Come to me, you winged devils of the ground! Come to me, you flightless fiends, and I will feed you with the blood of the innocent!”
“Well, this is a little peculiar,” you think to yourself. “But everyone’s got their own weird quirks. It’s probably nothing to be concerned about.”
“Yeah,” says another vampire. “For instance, I’m a bat vampire. But that doesn’t mean I’m a better vampire than a chicken vampire. All vampires are evil. And at the end of the day, that’s what matters most.”
“Yeah, okay. So, are you going to help me slay these chicken vampires, or do you still fucking love science?”
The priest hands you a wooden stake, and together you set about slaying all the vampires. It takes hours and hours, and by the end you are extremely exhausted. But you get the job done.
The next day, the old villager gives you a ride to the train station.
“Thanks for saving us from all those chicken vampires. And for teaching my idiot son how to kiss. Even if those make-out accidents were from vampires and not poor kissing technique, it’s a relief to know that my son will die a kissing man. Farewell!”
June the seventh, eighteen hundred and ninety-six,
You depart the village of L--- without much reasearch. But you have something else: a deeper knowledge of the sinister side of the world. And an understanding that even though science is fucking awesome, some things cannot be explained. You look down at your journal, which is filled with rational observations and scientific calculations, and realize that you’ve outgrown it.
A young boy catches the journal and begins to read it, smiling knowingly.
You Slayed The Vampires And Saved The Village!
“I hope you enjoyed that book. It certainly made an impression on me. Did you catch the reference to me at the end? I’m the small boy who catches the journal! Isn’t that nice? I think it is. Certainly a better ending than the last chapter of my father Jeffis Kleen’s autobiography, in which he claims to have once reamed a Lhasa Apso so hard with a Mini Cooper that it flew straight into the sun. He was a deeply troubled man.”
“You still don’t believe vampires are real? After all this?” asks one of the vampires.
“Fine,” she says. “We’ll see how much you doubt our existence when I turn you into one of us!”
The vampire swoops down and bites your neck, turning you into a vampire. You’re a vampire now.
“Wow, seriously? You’re a vampire now and you still don’t believe in them? That’s incredible. You must really love science.”
You Became A Vampire And Still Refused To Believe In Vampires!
“Wow! You must have great respect for science if you were able to become a vampire and still doubt the existence of vampires! Not like my father, Jeffis Kleen. That man has no respect for science. Or anything, for that matter. He once wrote a book where a hundred Hummers hit-and-run a beagle on Saturn. Saturn is a gas giant. There’s no way you would be able to drive a Hummer there, let alone a hundred of them. What a fucking disgrace.”
“Hungry...” says one of them.
“For blood...” says another.
“No, you fool. Blood is our food. We’re vampires. Don’t you get it?”
And the village throws a weird parade in your honor.
You also get the chicken man arrested for helping the chicken vampires turn about half of the village population into chicken vampires. What a creep.