Build, upgrade, sleep, portal, build, upgrade, sleep, portal… It just keeps repeating, over and over. The dark area past the portal lightens up as you build tiles closer to it. There’s an overwhelming need to keep building. And if I’m not building a new tile, I’m upgrading the level of a tile. Oh yeah, the tiles have levels. The technology in the tiles can focus the energy underneath so us hv’s can absorb the energy while we’re over the tiles. It’s pretty exhausting.

Heading into the portal is the only time I really get a rest. Rest is good, but I also really need the oil changes. I expel a lot of the old dirty oil whenever I get a few idle moments. Those don’t really happen often. Whatever is driving me to build is really intent on expanding the tiles as far and as quickly as possible.

That’s how I met Doomie. Well, not exactly. I did meet him first when he joined me building my forge. Oh, hmm, I guess he didn’t join, because he couldn’t build, just look around. He said he was “invited” to visit me, and he had to bring a whole lot of energy with him. That turned out to be pretty well timed, because it was right before I was trying to level up a second portal.

I heard under the portals in the bar that some of the forges have built plug seats to help with the energy fueling and oil transfers. Mine doesn’t have any of those. There are objects to build, like flowers, record player turntables, and a whole bunch of beach gear. I feel like I need to concentrate on building up as much energy as possible.

Doomie says that is a great strategy, because he can’t wait for the rift portals to open. He says once the rift portals open we’re going to see what Doom really is all about. I have no idea what he’s talking about. He usually goes on like that after a few oil cans at the tiki bar about six clicks down from my forge. Incidentally, he says he would rather we go anywhere else, that he hates the tiki bar vibe. But since Maid and GameOver like the coconut flavored oil cans, we go there.

Doomie gave GameOver his name. GameOver hates that name. But on the diagnostic readout, he has a Game Guy face and Hovercraft body. Smash those together after a couple of oil cans and GameOver sort of sticks. To be honest, GameOver crashes into things a lot, so it really does fit him pretty well.

That’s kinda what got us in trouble. We are all Dynamics. We’re put together from a bunch of parts that don’t really seem like they should go together. There are a few different types, but the Reavers are really intimidating when you see them in the underground passages. Their forges sit on sort of a molten lava field glowing a dark ominous red. Their weapon systems seem much cooler and badass as well! Swords, plug and blast, something called the Gulcher. Doomie says he should have been a Reaver, but his power source was just too low powered. When he has had almost too many oil cans he starts to talk about “the gamers”. His idea is there are entities out there controlling what we do. I don’t know if I believe him, but something does keep me from going to bed when I want to.

Oh, the trouble? Yeah, our good friend GameOver was being clumsy as always, and just when we were making the turn into our favorite tiki bar, he wasn’t watching around the corners like you are supposed to. Crash! Right into five or six Reavers on their way to a Metal Bar. I don’t mean a bar of metal, I mean old school classic metal, like Metallica, playing L-O-U-D, loud in a dark and ominous bar. Anyway, they were already quite grumpy, as almost all of us always are after ending a shift building the forge. Not enough energy and sleep.

The Reaver with the sniper faceplate and the Gulcher snarled, “You better learn to look around corners when the rift opens! I almost cut your hovercraft stabilizers off with my Gulcher!” That’s how I found out what a Gulcher was. He did almost end GameOver’s game right there, a couple of inches to the left and it really would have been Game Over.

Doomie was able to smooth things over. He distracted them by asking where they were going, and if any live bands were playing tonight. That turned into a classic metal band discussion, which we left him with the Reavers and went into the Tiki bar to chill and relax before we had to go back and get at it with the tiles, and upgrading, and on and on. Doomie did say they took him to the metal bar, and the music was awesome. He keeps trying to get us to go there, but it’s a long way further down. Maybe another time.