Logbook entry

Wingnut_English / 16 Apr 3305
The Unspoken Eulogy of Nicholas Brady

Rescue Ship - Resnik Dock
HIP 24046, April 15 3305

"New ship?"

Wingnut nodded glumly. "New ship."

"Fresh paint."

The Commander scowled, but relented. "Pristine."

Travis sat down on the catwalk. "And you're one lighter."

"There wasn't anything anyone could do, I hear."

This time, it was the Author that repeated agreeably. "There wasn't anything anyone could do."

"He was an NPC. He knew the risks when he signed on with the Pilots Federation. He could have resigned at any time. Especially after your little homework assignment. After he knew what he really was."

Travis hesitated for a moment's consideration, then nodded. "He knew the risks. But he went through with it anyway."

There was a moment of silence, and Wingnut sagged against the railing. He looked sidelong at the tired writer. Even the grocer's normally glistening scalp seemed flat in the harsh lighting.

"It's a fucking cheat, is what it is. Like Coffey all over again.
Did he have to, Travis? Did he?"

"He knew he did." Finally, Travis let his eyes rise to meet Wingnut's glare. "And I know it won't make you feel any better, but Mister Brady managed to accomplish exactly what I set him to."

Soft incredulity. "How?"

"You didn't notice, but your ship didn't actually come home missing one man. You're actually missing two."

"Wh-" Wingnut froze, realizing the answer as quickly as he could think of the question. "Him?"

"Yep. Remember how he appeared in Coffey's place? And then Madelyn DeFranco and Kaci Knox? Well, he didn't do it this time."

"Sam Micheals is -gone?-"

"Sam Micheals is gone."

"I.... I don't understand. How did that happen? What the hell was in those books?"

Travis inhaled and produced them from a box on the catwalk; he had been bringing by Brady's personal effects, collected from the remains of the "Spoiler Warning."

First, he gently thumbed through the pages of "VALIS," first. Not finding what he was looking for, he set VALIS down and skimmed through "Radio Free Albemuth."

..... "There he is. I kind of suspected."

Travis set the book down where it was opened, and turned it towards the Commander.

-


Berkeley, California
HeadSpace, 1975


"Then the day came. Sam Micheals was at home, agonizing over his circumstances.
Pacing feverishly back and forth, he paused only to stare at trembling hands.

There was a sudden pounding from the door.
I opened it to the smiling face of Vivian Kaplan, the horrible wench who had tried to frame me for planted drugs.

Behind her were four heavily armored police officers. She produced a warrant.

Sam silently pleaded with me to close the door.


--:-:--

Wikipedia, "Radio Free Albemuth"
MeatSpace, 2019

"In this alternate history, the corrupt United States president Ferris F. Fremont (FFF for 666, ‘F’ being the 6th letter in the alphabet) becomes Chief Executive in the late 1960s following Lyndon Johnson's administration.

The character is best described as an amalgam of Joseph McCarthy and Richard Nixon, who abrogates civil liberties and human rights through positing a conspiracy theory centered on a (presumably) fictitious subversive organization known as "Aramchek".

In addition to this, he is associated with a right-wing populist movement called "Friends of the American People" (FAPers).

The President's paranoia and opportunism lead to the establishment of a real resistance movement that is organized through narrow-beam radio transmissions from a mysterious alien near-Earth satellite by a superintelligent, extraterrestrial, but less than omnipotent being (or network) named VALIS.

Like its successor VALIS, this novel is autobiographical. Dick himself is a major character, though fictitious protagonist Nicholas Brady serves as a vehicle for Dick's alleged gnostic theophany on February 11, 1974.

In addition, Silvia Sadassa is a character who claims that Ferris Fremont is actually a communist covert agent recruited by Sadassa's mother when Fremont was still a teenager."



--:-:--

Berkeley, California
HeadSpace, 1975


"Hello, Nicholas." chirped Vivian cheerfully. "I just wanted to let you know your plan didn't work. Our censors checked out your friend Silvia and discovered her ties to Aramchek.

We're here to arrest you."

The glaring Berkeley sun bore down from above. I looked over at Sam and sighed.
This was it. Our game was over.
I'd been nicked.


--:-:--

Sam was visibly agitated. Over and over, he repeated with a blanched face.

"Not like this," he moaned even as he and I were handcuffed by Freemont's enforcers, the solid-faced constables of our own police department.

"Not like this, not like this."

Once the officers signaled that we were secure, Vivian had us line up against the wall.

Curiously, she eyed Sam. "You're a new face. I don't think I've seen you before. What's your part in all this?"

"I don't have one."

"So you're telling me," Kaplan snorted, shooting a sidelong glance in my direction. "That we caught you in the home of a known treasoner, at the time of his arrest, colluding with him, and you -really- don't have anything to do with it?"

I snorted and rolled my eyes. "Colluding," I grumbled.

"I don't. I don't even belong here!"

Vivian sighed, before turning her attention my way.

"Nicholas, the 'Friends of the American People' have worked far too long and far too hard building this case to let anything go wrong now. And now you're arranging for witnesses? No, no, we can't have that.

Since you and your imaginary friends have been making things so hard for President Freemont, we're just going to have to make a quiet example out of you."

Kaplan pointed. Nicholas braced, his heart racing.

"Sergeant. He's resisting arrest. Take that man into the backyard and execute him."

The constables clasped Sam by the shoulders and began to pull him towards the back door. All eyes were on him.

"No!" cried Sam, beginning to struggle in earnest now. "It isn't supposed to happen like this.

IT ISN'T SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN LIKE THIS!!"

I could only stare at the door as it slammed. The yelling subsided into crying, and then punctuated with the flat bang of a pistol in the California summer.

And just like that, Sam Micheals was dead.
Vivian smiled in cocky triumph. She could tell from my expression that the Fappers had won again.
I was alone with myself, for the first time I could remember.

Just like that.


Meanwhile, in SkipSpace...
SCP-3059 - Addendum


A Foundation agent was approached by a trusted contact on the date of [REDACTED], who provided a tablet pre-loaded with what at first appeared to be an electronic copy of "Radio Free Albemuth" by science fiction author Philip K. Dick.

Radio Free Albemuth, published 1985, is a pseudo-autobiography that closely follows the life of Philip K. Dick. It mostly revolves around a spiritual epiphany that Dick experienced in the year 1974.

It is the rougher draft of "Valis," one of the author's last and most well-known works.

-

On closer examination, this copy of "Radio Free Albemuth" has been altered to replace two of the books' primary protagonists. These effects are known to be native to SCP-3059, and are not unusual within that context. However, as SCP-3059 continued to 'bleed' into the fiction, the Foundation's documentation of the incident was similarly 'infected', resulting in a minor breach.

Using fictional accounts of SCP personnel, the instance continued to replicate itself across a number of continuities that is presently unknown.

The character of "Nicholas Brady" has been replaced with an instance of SCP-3059-1, under the usual name of "Sam Micheals," and is summarily executed late in the story during a crucial plot point.

In the original version, Brady was the one to be executed, leaving only the author's self-insert to finish the story.

In the altered copy, the story continues as normal, with Nicholas Brady assuming the role of the author himself.

Having been replaced with Nicholas Brady, the author's own self-inserted character of "Philip" does not appear in the text at all.

-

According to an expert at the Foundation Libraries, this change, however minor, removes any ambiguity and reclassifies "Radio Free Albemuth" as a straight fiction - as opposed to the meta-literary phenomenon it originally was, further undermining its strength as a cautionary message.

Had this version been released instead of the copy presently in circulation, Dick's legacy would have turned out much differently.


-

In one passage after Micheal's execution, while listening to a song on the radio, Brady makes reference to a character named "Horselover Fat."*
Fat has been identified as Brady's analogue in "VALIS."

( * A code for the author's name; Philip: one who cares for horses, and Dich: German for "large" or "fat." This is explained only in VALIS. )

-

This is the first documented instance in which a character who was -not- Sam Micheals has demonstrated self-awareness beyond the confines of the immediate story, especially concerning a version that had not yet been written.

-

When the contents of the e-book were brought to SCP-3059's attention, the subject broke down in hysterical relief; water displacement tests immediately following the interview marked a 3.5% increase in -3059's total body mass.

As SCP-3059's properties have previously been believed irreversible, further examination of this particular work and its effect on the subject is expected.

Following routine check-in with the Containment Team, we've confirmed that no breach has been taken place, and that SCP-3059 remains in Foundation custody.

-

NOTE: The only other non-factory data on the e-book was a simple TXT file, believed to be from SCP-3059-T (pending confirmation). It appears to be addressed directly to the Foundation.

[ Contents of YOURE_WELCOME.txt ]
"That was capital. Innocent people were hurt.
The 'original' has been destroyed. SCP-3059 is secure.

Don't expect me me to solve any more of your problems.
~ Travis."



--:-:--

Rescue Ship - Resnik Dock
HIP 24046, 3305


Wingnut scrubbed his temples.

"Okay, say all of that again, but in Ritalin form."

"I put a story about another story into your story, to get rid of a story that comes from another story. We had to do this because that story would have turned your story into a not-a-story, and it would have turned the other story into a not-a-story if we hadn't written a story about not-stories into your story, just to make sure everything stayed a story."

"And this is what you call..."

"... a Dick Move."

".... thanks, Travis, everything makes perfect sense now."
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