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Fermius Firefly

A Dream Log, whenever I remember the dreams I've had.

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Location: San Marcos, United States

Fermius is a pen name drawn from a series of short fiction I wrote when I published the small press magazine Stellanova (on paper.) I play RPG games to escape from my daily grind as a technology wage slave for the state of California. I eat out a lot in order to do my part in supporting our increasingly service level economy. I am butler to 2 feline masters. If you ask them they will tell you I'm not very good at it, late with dinner, don't have enough hands with brushes in them, and sometimes I even lock them out of their office.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Four and Gaming Party

When I woke up this morning I found that I had written myself a note to help remember a dream I had last night. It was the single word "Four" and nothing else. While I'm sure that seemed significant at the time, I can't remember a single thing about it now. I don't even remember waking up and writing the note, if you could call it that.

This morning I dreamed that I was invited to a big gaming party by friends, a couple of former students, who I haven't seen in a long time. I arrived and thought I was early, but my hosts explained that they'd invited some of their friends, who they knew were gamers, early so they could teach them a new game. The game was a combination of Monolpoly, Sim City, and Illuminati. The rules were complex and there were a number of cards, counters and money props as well as vehicles and various buildings that were to be set up on a modular buildable board. 

I pointed out, after a couple of turns, that this cried out for computerization and a three-d virtualization with funny animations. My host had to agree, and wondered if anyone had licensed the game yet.

A group of new guests arrived, and the hostess insisted that I come with her to greet them. Turns out she was introducing me around to the single members of their gaming group. I stood out front and chatted with the group of women for a time. One blonde woman was obviously cold, so I offered her my cloak, a red multiple-layered red silk construction with a dark blue green lining. It was a costume piece for a character I played, so it looked recently singed and a little bit ash colored around the "burnt" edges. After I explained that, the woman was glad to take it. 

"Oh! This is much softer than I expected."

Our host offered to take the group on a tour of the grounds, and the hostess asked for my help in the kitchen. Once there she started apologizing to me, it seems one of their other guests had brought N as a date. I calmed her fears and promised to behave. 

N was sitting on a coffee table just near the edge that surrounded the sunken gaming floor. I stepped in to resume my place at the game, but a twelve year old kid was filling in for me. We weren't doing all that well, but he looked like he was having fun, so I motioned for him to continue. I watched a round and did some people watching. Seeing N wasn't making me happy, and I could tell she was doing her best to avoid even looking at me. 

The hostess noticed that I wasn't engaged in anything, so came and "rescued" me. I told her that wasn't necessary but we littered around in the kitchen. She'd made some sort of gin concoction and took a taste test. It was so bad she immediately spit it back out into the container. Embarrassed she handed the container to me and asked me to go and pour nit out in the deep sink, she didn't want that smell in her kitchen sink. 

The deep sink was just around the back of the kitchen, and from the I could see my host guiding the group of women back to the party. I noticed that the woman was carefully holing up the hem of my cloak to keep it from dragging in the wet glass. I noted that she was very graceful, and even though I thought she was a bit on the slender side, she had curvy hips and a narrow waist.

The blonde woman came right up to me, bundled up with the hood and face cover bunched up around her face. I said "let me," and adjusted the hood and face mask for her, even that was too big for her.

She pulled up the cloak and inhaled deeply. I realized that even though the cloak was clean, I'd been wearing it and it had to have smelled a bit like me.

I started to apologize, she interrupted, "I love the way this smells.

"That's just me...." I stopped, realizing how awkward that must sound.

She stepped past me into the game room, offering an edge so that I could help her out of it. She made just enough of a flourish to attract a lot of attention, including N's. "Now it's both of us," she half closed her eyes and made a yummy noise. "Thank you, for the loan." 

I unwrapped her from the voluminous cloak, revealing her petite but still curvy figure. She placed both hands on the cloak and my chest underneath, I could still feel the warmth of her in the cloak as she stretched up on tiptoes, lips puckered and aimed at my cheek, which she still couldn't reach. I bent down and placed a hand on her waist lightly to steady her.

"You're welcome. I don't the cloak has ever looked better."

It was a cheesy line, but she giggled and hugged me; I blushed even more. She turned and waved to the people in the room, staying at my side snuggled up against the silk cloak and my arm.

N was frowning and turned away when she caught my eye. I actually felt guilty, but stopped myself from pulling away from my new friend and going to her. My hosts were absolutely beaming at us, so I knew they had set this little scene up. That made me smile. Even if the little blondes affection was contrived, I resolved to enjoy it and it's residual effects.

We walked over to the game and I explained what I understood to my new companion, who showed every sign of enjoying the conversation and my attention. Our conversation took an interesting turn when my host mentioned that I had created the game system they'd played in high school. She virtually dragged me off to a small table and began to grill me about RPG design philosophy.

Talk about being my dream girl.

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Adventure on Rails

Sometime, I shall have to look at how to consistently grab the tablet in the "right side up" position.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Not Quite Transformers

Another space travel dream. This time we landed in a churchyard next to its stables. The stables were full of little animals. The vehicles of this planet were sentient, and typically chose their own drivers. We were warned not to handle the toy sized vehicles, as they might grow attached to us. 

The only vehicle that was interested in me was a sled. Snow style, stand on the runners type of dog sled. It was red. I decided that in order to not insult our hosts I would take it. Turned out there was no need of snow. The sled zoomed around on the roads, and off it turned out, quite nicely. I could ride on the sled, or stand behind it on the runners, which certainly made it seem faster. By the end of the dream, it had seen one of our books about Christmas and was actually flying around with a cargo of little ones. 

I'm not sure what our hosts thought of that. I also know that our captain was loath to bring any of the vehicles aboard, and he didn't want to leave any of his colonists behind, either. Our hosts thought that there were plenty of room and resources for us, and we would give their old boring society some new interests.

I suggested that we had enough resources and help on this planet that a small number of us could stay behind long enough to build a vessel to follow along. But he didn't like that idea either, as the aliens would know where we settled. 

I excused myself from the conversation and took the sled out for a run.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Space station

I was visiting a niece on one of many space stations that circled the earth. Being much older and not used to floating around I was making a pretty clumsy mess of it. I did get to my room, however, and was looking for a way to keep my telescope from drifting away when J arrived to take me to dinner.

She managed to round up my telescope and stuck some sort of rubbery stuff to the bottom of the tripod legs. It then stuck quite handily to the "floor." I use the quotes there because I would discover when visiting her suite later, that many of the permanent residents had completely done away with the floor ceiling and wall convention, their entire quarters were comprised of walls.

She had prepared a delightful meal. To make it easier to eat, we were in a rotating common room that she shared with seven other suites. Nearly everyone from her suite was there. Dinner was entertaining, and I did as much talking as listening, as there were a lot of questions about the "old days" back on earth.

After dinner I visited J's rooms, and was stunned and a little disoriented to discover that there was really no up or down, even in the bedroom. She had taken and cut out the pages from a book of paintings I had sent and used them to decorate nearly every flat surface large enough to hold them. I found the center part of the book intact, it had wide graph paper margins, and she'd been using them to make various calculus calculations.

"Taking new classes?"

"No, those are a friend's, mine are the recipes." she flipped back through the book and changed the LED lights to a different hue, showing her notes, and calculations.

I noted that both sets of calculations seemed related to rationing schemes and optimizing resources. It dawned on me that this habitat was thinking of seceding and heading out into space like so many others. I suddenly understood why my quarters looked so permanent.

"This isn't just a visit for me, is it?"

My niece looked distressed, "I told them you would figure it out right away. Please, we want you to come with us. Don't snitch..."

I told her I wouldn't snitch. I wasn't sure I wanted to go with them, either, but was pretty sure I wasn't going to have a choice in the matter.

Ad astra per technica,

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Way Station, Dream City Party

The pump had multiple signs on it, at one time they were bright yellow and red, but had faded considerably since they were first installed. The parking lot behind the pump was nearly full, and the lights on the building atop the nearby rise were all off but a row of LEDs that spilled barely enough light to illuminate the bottom line of a ragged, chipped sign saying "way station."

I knew that the line atop that said "Government" and thought it appropriate that it was now unreadable. The government had long abandoned running the way stations, so they were in private hands, now.

A young family had just pushed their vehicle into a nearby parking spot. The mother was obviously upset, so, even though I knew what the trouble was, I asked anyway.

"My husband thought we could get to my grandmother's house. There was traffic." she held up the family's fuel card, it was yellow, meaning that they could only fuel up every other week. Since it was the end of the month, I assumed they had already used their allotment, and since they'd just pushed the car away from the pump, the husband was making arrangements to either get a ride, or to stay at the way station. They'd obviously been denied a. "compassion" exception.

My vehicle was very efficient, essentially having a little gas engine to charge the electric batteries, and my fuel ration card was red, meaning that I could only access the fuel pumps once a month.

I could only take about two liters, so I had always brought along a large container so I could purchase my full allotment, which was twenty liters. In the past I had always been good about not selling or giving away my fuel. I had a large tank at home on my power generator, so giving away a few liters would only be a misdemeanor, unlike selling any amount of fuel, that was a felony.

The transition to the next dream was interesting, a silhouette walked on, grabbed the edge of the way station, then carried the whole thing off, light still coming from only one upper window. It was as if the way station had just been painted on a background flat.

I was then outside an apartment above the Dream City Mall. There was a loud, and once I could see inside, clothing optional party going on. Well, still not being fully divorced yet, I wasn't ready for those sort of shenanigans. I slipped out the back after saying hello to the people I knew, greeting the friendlier ones I didn't, and even poking my head into a back room where a paper and pencil RPG was being played.

The game master asked if I wanted to take over, but I declined. I found myself out on a balcony overlooking the inside of the mall. I chuckled to myself at how appropriate the view was for the owners. A mall guard strolled by, and we recognized one another. We didn't know one another as a party guest and mall guard, however, but as friendly rivals. We greeted each other, then there was a sort of pyrotechnic wrestling match. I came out the winner, surprising my dark haired, bearded opponent. "But your beard is so short!"

"Yes, it turns out that quality is more important..." before I could finish the aphorism, he lunged at me and ripped out a pinch of my beard!

"We'll see about that! Next time, maestro!" With a flourish of smoke he vanished, leaving the by now forgotten woman on the balcony with me completely flummoxed.

I combed my bear, making sure I wasn't bleeding and that the gap wasn't to large. It felt like he'd only managed to pull a dozen hairs or so.

"He's going to be surprised when he wakes up and doesn't have anything."

"Huh? I thought this was just a dream!" the woman remarked as I woke up I could swear I actually heard her words in the room with me.

The Way Station

From the first of the dreams I remember last night. I actually did this note in bed before the write up.

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Friday, August 12, 2011

A Lawnmower Man, Three AM Notes.

Ad astra per technica,

A, Lawnmower Man

The dream started out as the standard "I've lost my car in this huge dirt parking lot" dream, but soon I found myself standing in my driveway. The yard on either side was overgrown with tall lush grasses mixed in with Queen Anne's Lace (Much like my real back yard this spring after our unusually heavy rains. The butterflies and lizards love it. And now there's a hawk living there as well. All this went through my mind while the dream was going on.)

The yard and house was a mix of both my and my parents' place, yet neither at the same time. The grass was tall, well over a foot high, and filled the front yard from the house to the drainage ditch on the other side of the picket fence that separated my property from the dirt road. Just looking at it brought up mixed feelings. I loved the thick lush growth, and the animals it provided shelter for, but I didn't like how it made the house look like it was abandoned.

A arrived with his lawnmower. It wasn't significantly different from my own, but I decided not to point that out, because it was, at least, newer. His mower charged through the thick grass and Queen Anne's Lace, filling the bag up every few feet. I thought, again, about bringing out my mower, as it is a mulching mower. I decided the mulch would be so thick that it would choke out the plants underneath. I stopped A and took the full mower bag back around the side of the house.

The path around the side of the house was just like my parent's home, a long walk with the house on one side and a cinderblock wall on the other. There was no hill on this property, the wall was more of a wind break. In the far back corner, where the waterfall and pond would be, was my much depleted compost heap. As I was showing A where to dump the clippings, and how rich the dirt at the bottom of the pile was, N came out of my back kitchen door with her new boyfriend. He was dressed in jeans and a red flannel shirt, almost the same as my own.

He was tall and slender, just like she likes, except for the short dark hair. It seems she was willing to compromise after all. I found their presence irritating, especially since they were drinking the last of my iced tea from a pair of collectable Star Wars glasses from the display case in the front hall. (Interestingly enough, I don't actually own any such glasses, and am really unlikely to.) Did I mention that he was thin? Irritatingly so? Good.

Just for fun, I'm going to try to include a picture of the actual note I wrote at three in the morning to help remember the dream. Or not. I can't quite figure out how to get it here from the iPad...still learning. Just ride posting it by mail. The orientation was wrong somehow. There are some limitations on the device that I don't think I would have had with a netbook.

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Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Paralyzed Near the Spinach Patch


Lovely little night terror this morning. I was laying along a dirt path, only my right arm able to move. I seemed to be wrapped in a thick blanket or comforter of some sort. Whatever it was, it as both too warm where it covered me, and too cold where it didn't. The longer I was there the more I began to worry about the cats, who'd been left in a nearby rental cabin. 

Then N showed up. She wasn't willing to even go for help. "Thats fine," I said, "I think i can reach the spinach." My arm wriggles out from under the blanket and I waved it towards the baby plants, stirring up the dust of the dirt road. I was actually two or three feet from being able to reach them.

I asked her to at least check on the cats, and for some reason I couldn't think of Giles name, and for whichever cat I named instead, N just said, "Oh, that cat's dead." or "Valentine's dead, too." This last confused me, as I have never had a cat named Valentine. (now I would be afraid to name a cat that.)

N walked back over to my cabin and named the cats she could find, there was one missing from her list, but I was tired of naming cats only to be told they were dead. 

As the sun came up, N excused herself and left me there. I was starting to worry that someone driving on the dirt road wouldn't see me, and I wasn't strong enough, with just one arm, to roll myself off of the road. I wasn't even sure being in the ditch would be much of an improvement, at least someone might stop for me before running me over.

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Monday, August 08, 2011

I Hate Alarm Clocks

Back to work anxiety has not apparently filtered into my dreams, as I woke up to the alarm, and fleeing cats with the equally rapid vanishing memories of svelte fantasy women and breezy meadow rompings.


Sunday, August 07, 2011

Swamp Train

Most of the family were trapped in irons, chained together working on digging up rocks and gravel and then carrying it through swampy waters to the site of a rail bed that was being repaired. It seemed like it was either perpetually night, but I knew it was mostly just a thick misty cloud layer.

One of the other workers found an old still with bottles of moonshine all around it. He smuggled them back, one at a time, in the bottom of his gravel bucket. The supervisors finally caught him, their suspicions aroused when he kept volunteering for gravel duty.

Gravel duty was the messiest job. One had to go and dig around the bottom of the few low swampy hills, then wash the black, sticky and stinking mud off of the handful of small stones it contained. After just a couple of buckets full you would smell like the swamp bottom, and look like it, too.

The overseers pierced his tongue for it, and threatened to kill the next person they caught with alcohol in their possession. I knew this was going to be a problem, as the man had stashed the bottles and bags everywhere around our camp.

Until the rail bed was repaired, we kept finding the hidden contraband and then were forced to move it out of the camp, but somewhere we could eventually lead the guards to find the whole cache at once...right before the train came through to take them away, preferably. I and a couple of the others were also pilfering pry bars and other tools, as we knew we were going to be chained up when the train arrived.

The train arrived, and the overseers loaded up the young women and chained the rest of us outside of our camp.

"You gonna leave us here to starve?"

"No. Won't take long for the 'gaters to figure out you ain't going anywhere."

The now drunk guards all piled aboard the train. I could hear E yelling at them that they were "disgusting drunks."

E's size and demeanor had kept her safe up till now, but some of the guards were really drunk and I was worried for her safety.

Fortunately we had been chained together outside of sight of the rail cars, but right on top of one of our caches of tools and makeshift weapons. As soon as the last guards were out of earshot we started digging. It was only a matter of minutes before we were able to break ourselves free.

It was our plan to send a small group ahead of the train with ropes and the like to set up a way to take the rescue team and our women off the slowly moving train.

There were only three of us who snuck on board, just as the train got under way. The women were mostly in the last coach, making it really easy to just decouple the car. There was a tussel with the guards, they rushed the two men at the back of the car, while the smallest and least drunk one raced to get to the barracks car two cars up. I was waiting just on the other side of the door, when he came out I pushed him across the gap, slamming his head against the deck of the other car. I disarmed him and, after prying apart the coupling, rolled him off the platform, where he helped sloe down the rescue car.

The next car was actually empty, and as we passed the first of the revue ropes, I reached out and hooked it agains the window frame. The train peeled the windows out, creating a huge racket. The rest of the guards came running to see what was the matter, and I was hidden behind their coach door as the crossed the gap into the car that was being demolished.

I locked the door behind me and raced ahead to the dining car. The train was still picking up speed when I finally spotted E and the foreman. The train wasn't going even as fast as a run, and I spotted one of our crew setting a rope with a hook in it onto the front of the dining car. This one was low into the mostly decorative panelling on the sides ot the car. The trim started to tear away. E laughed at the foreman, a bad choice, as he knocked her off the bench I shouted to get his attention. He turned and then kicked her through the torn gap in the side of the train before drawing out his whip.

Apparently, he'd only seen the big rust pry bar, completely missing the percussion cap revolver in the other hand.

I could hear E wailing over the rattle of the train, so I hoped she would be okay. I then shot the foreman in the upper thigh. He dropped his whip and crumpled into the walkway. I tapped him on the head with the pry bar as I passed. Fortunately the owners of this operation had their car, with it's fancy domed observation deck on the front of the train, and I made my way through the freight car, taking a moment to open the large doors and push some of the lighter crate out. We still hadn't passed the rescue ropes, and I was able to shout that the women were safe back down the line.

I made my way into the engine room and convinced e driver to abandon his post, after using the pry bar to break his chains. He jumped, not even using a rescue rope. I pushed the throttle to full, opened up the air intakes on the boiler, and then shoveled coal into the feed chute until it was full up. The other workers were shouting that there was only one more rope, but I wanted to make sure the door to the observation cars was impassable. At least long enough for the train to build up significant speed.

I waited until we were going over a flooded causeway to jump out, trusting that a water/muck landing might be a little bit softer than trees or rocks.

Even before I hit the water I was thinking that we should follow the rails out and rescue any others we came across.

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Friday, August 05, 2011


I had to sell the house and I moved into a motorhome that I had to keep moving to avoid getting ticketed. I found myself parked outside a crime scene one morning. I overheard the detectives talking about a serial killer. I decided that I'd better go buy a gun to protect myself.

The police wanted to question me so brought me to the house, which I assumed was the scene of the crime. There was a basement access in what would be the closet of my office. We climbed down the stairs, and I noticed that instead of a basement, we were in a vertical shaft that continued down quite a ways.

We passed a waterfall, the steps damp and slick from the mist. "Are you sure your person isn't just lost down here?" I asked, pointing to several side passages as we delved deeper.

"Quite sure," one of the detectives stated. We came out in a large chamber, and I could see that the rock in part of the cave floor was glowing red. I warned them that there was lava there and we should go around. But, they continued on, making me hop over the lava area as fast as I could to keep from melting the bottom of my shoes.

Someone had used sandbags to guide the flow of water over the lava to make a wet path of sorts. Although the water was very warm, it wasn't melting my shoes so I stayed in it. I warned the detectives to stay in it as well, because there might still be lava to either side.

"You mean you don't know?"

"Know what?"

We came around a large pillar of crystal studded rock to find a huge steel tube plunged into the center of a twenty foot diameter lava pit. There was a glassy stone walk all the way around it with safety rails to keep one from falling in. It was hot, but there was a cool moist breeze from behind us.

"We were hoping you could tell us."

"A geothermal power thingy?" I guessed. By this point I was thinking that you would have to tunnel a ways, and very carefully, to get around the lava lake that was below our feet. I explained that I didn't live here, I lived in my vehicle and was just parked on the street until a spot opened up at a nearby campground.

The layout of the house was similar to my old house, so I wondered if it had been made by the same contractor.

They then wanted to know where the rest of the family was. I didn't know, of course, as I wasn't involved in their case. I just happened to park outside their house last evening when I couldn't get a spot at the local campground. I showed them my reservation for tonight through next weekend.

"Is that time accurate?"

"As far as I know, you could check the campground computer to make sure."

"We'll do that."

"Do you mind if we take that," the detective said in a way that indicated that he didn't care if I minded or not.

"Of course not, they emailed me a copy at the same time"

"He could have been here before going to the campground."

I could tell from the detective's face that he was sure the campground receipt completely ruled me out as his most convenient suspect. I also knew that I had dinner and gas receipts for the times leading up to the point where I made reservations, and I wasn't a stranger to the people in either place.

"I 'd like a receipt for that." I pointed to the receipt in his hands, but he just handed it back.

We started back, but almost immediately came to a split in the tunnel up, and it wasn't clear which shaft to take, as both had LED lights along the walls.

One tunnel had the lights on the right and the other had them on the left. I was pretty sure the lights had been on the left as we'd come down, but the detective led us into the tunnel where the lights were on the left. At least we had a source of water and the cops all had flashlights.

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Thursday, August 04, 2011

Stumble Bum

Dinner did not agree with me, so the aches and pains insinuated themselves into my dreams as a random falling and bruising myself.

I have no idea what was supposed to be happening in the dream, but every time I tried to get up someplace, even as simple as pulling myself up onto the throne (a loveseat sized futon given to us by one of N's ex-Navy buddies) or the retaining wall, I would snag something, clothing, hand, foot, shoelace, etc. I would then and stumble and fall, always managing to land on something uncomfortable, the exercise machine, barbells, retaining wall, broken clay pots, thorn bushes....


Monday, August 01, 2011

Dream City Afterlife

A Baseball player comes off the field and we are together next to one another on the trolley. Next thing we know the trolley is being tossed into the air and out into the harbor. Somehow we survive but not as ourselves. The ball player wants to go back to the stadium and get back in the game.

When we get there no one knows who he is. No one recognizes me, either, but that hardly matters as I didn't expect them to. I knew I wasn't the same person as I started out to be. I managed to talk the manager into allowing us to come in as volunteer workers.

I got to work one of the Fifties style TV cameras, making a nice rack focus shot down the right field bleachers where the player's wives were all seated. The coaches all seemed to think that was very motivating, so asked the stadium to hire me for their next scrimmage. Istarted talking up the hitting abilities of the former ball player and they decided to humor me by letting him try to hit a few balls.

He did, right out of the park. The coach went out to the mound to tell his pitcher to stop screwing around. I could see that the pitcher was very frustrated, and was trying to throw difficult pitches. Finally the coach had to agree that my friend could hit.

We left the park, each with a season contract. We stood at the trolley station, checking our pockets for some indication of where we lived. We both had money, but no ID of any sort. I doubted that the me of this world, if there was one, would take us in.

As we talked about what we were going to do to get out of this mess, Death, or perhaps the Devil showed up. He seemed upset that we were making the best of what he said was supposed to be a horrible afterlife. I then found myself strapped into a harness dangling from a zip line to the far side of the harbor. The ball player was dodging a giant white potato, actually splitting himself in two to avoid getting squished.

The potato split into two and so the process continued until they looked like a giant plate of corned beef hash. I grabbed Death, or whatever he was, and we rolled out over the harbor back towards the stadium. He couldn't focus on smashing the ball player, as I was threatening to drop him. The ball player managed to pull himself together, smashing the now smaller potato fragments.

"Okay! Now you go back!"

I found myself rolling onto the landing platform, only the zip line was completely in the stadium. I was me again, and because I'd volunteered to be the demonstrator for the zip line, I had missed the trolley that had flipped into the ocean.

I don't know if the ball player survived, or was still playing ball on the Dream City Afterlife team.

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