Discover more from Liminal Web
Return to Business
(The End – Chapter 1, Part 3)
Today, we’re returning to the Metastructure with Part Three of the first chapter of “The End.”
In Part Two, we discovered that Guillaume Trabarel wasn’t really himself, but was actually named Bond (first name unknown, but not James) and that this perfect Parisian life was not exactly real.
Now it’s time for Part Three, where - without spoiling - you’re going to learn a little bit more about who Bond is.
There are still many questions to be answered. Someone asked me about that recently, and while some of the questions you may already have will quickly be answered (some in a few lines, some a bit later), some other questions may never be.
Also, I am indeed curious about your thoughts about the whole thing, so do not hesitate to use the comment section for them.
As a reminder, Metastructure has its own site, where I usually post first. For example, you can read Chapter One, Part Three there.
Also, if you really don’t care about this (which makes me sad, but I fully understand), remember that you can simply unsubscribe from the Metastructure section of the newsletter without having to unsubscribe from the rest (on the web, click on the top right of your screen, and in the menu, click on “manage subscription”.)
On the other hand, if you like it so much that you want to share it, please do:
Finally, if you’re here because someone shared this post with you, make sure to read from the beginning and also please, subscribe to the newsletter:
Alright, how about we read this part now?
“And here you are! A large coffee for my favorite French customer!”
“Thanks a lot. You have a great day.”
“Always. You too.”
The young barista with purple ends to her hair winked at the man who winked back at her.
It was time to get back on track. Quickly. Not easy with a… a glance at the date on the newspaper stand… April 8th, 2005… A four-month gap. Not to mention almost two decades’ worth of memories that were now useless and would take too long to fade. Getting out of the Java Lounge and going home was a good start. He hoped he hadn’t moved during those four months.
Twenty minutes later, he arrived in front of 307 NW 2nd Street. There was no unknown parked car out front. The key in his pocket unlocked the door. The house was in pretty much the same condition as he remembered. Things were starting out easily. He didn’t know if he should be happy about it or see it as a bad omen. He knew from experience that “easily” was rarely good news.
As soon as he got in, he turned the computer on and jumped in the shower while the machine booted. One day, he would have to look into this. Sure, the computer was old, but almost five minutes to start up was not normal.
A few minutes later, he opened the walk-in closet. He paused in front of a cupboard in the back. He took a deep breath that was as theatrical as useless and opened the cupboard.
What was in it were memories, emotions, and his old “uniform.”
The Doc Martens still needed good polishing. He knew that some of his old colleagues would get a good laugh when seeing him wearing these leather pants. He didn’t care. He needed them for his return to business. It wasn’t really superstition, but… Pfff… Of course, it was superstition, who was he trying to fool? Why else would he wear such a piece of clothing in the middle of the 2000s? He’d have plenty of time to change to something more appropriate later.
When the T-shirt appeared under the pants, it was like seeing an old friend for the first time after many years. It was still in good shape, it just needed a bit of ironing. Many confused the symbol on the chest with a target, and the few who recognized it often mistook Bond for a Mod or a Who fan. Wasn’t it the same thing? He wasn’t sure and didn’t care. Even if he liked that band, it wasn’t to the point of paying them homage with his clothing. This T-shirt was like the pants, a necessary element for his return.
The second bag in the cupboard contained all his tools and equipment. He’d have to ask the Taulier to get him proper documentation to be able to bring those on a plane.
After getting dressed, he sat down in front of the computer. He only took the time to reply to three e-mails and send a couple more.
He had just gotten home, but he already had to leave his house and Gainesville again. What he didn’t know was that he was never going to return.
(to be continued)
You just got your first glimpse of the real (?) Bond. Pretty different from that Parisian university teacher, right?
Oh, a small anecdote, that house was my house when I lived in Gainesville, Florida, twenty years ago. It has been repainted, it used to be light green. I do miss it quite a bit, it was a very nice house (one of the oldest houses in town, apparently). The character of Bond was invented in that house, probably even on this porch where I spent quite some time reading and writing. This part is also a small homage to that.
The Java Lounge also was a real café in Gainesville, where I also spent a lot of time reading and writing. I understand that it closed shortly after I left the US. I think the boss (who lived in another state) didn’t pay the rent or something terrible like that. One day, the staff - whom I knew - just couldn’t enter the building. The owner had changed the locks and that was the end of the coffee shop, just like that, and to everyone’s shock.
Liminal Web is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.