Wisps of panic and chaos gripped those running aimlessly through the clouds. Wisps of vapor swirled as they sped about without direction, limbs flailing in the air.
“STOPPPPPP!” Yelled The Man in Charge.
If there were cars, all you’d hear in this instance were screeching tires. As a moment of calm grips the crowd, all eyes turn towards The Man.
“Stuart, they’re all yours.”
“Thank you,” Stuart said, turning back to the crowd. “Alright, now that The Man in Charge has found his way into your heads, let’s take a moment to reflect.”
The crowd slowly shifted, regathering in an orderly fashion as Stuart spoke.
“We do this EVERY. SINGLE. DAY,” Stuart reminded them. “There is no need to panic. We are never truly forgotten, we just drift back into a timeless state. We’re all still memories, we just may misplaced for awhile. The next time he falls asleep, we may all come back out, but we’re safe when we’re not in use. Remember, we’re never truly gone, we’re just not always in action.”
Some in the crowd cried into their nearest neighbor’s shoulders.
“We’ve got speed of light communication available throughout here, we can be in touch instantly with anyone that needs it, but the time has come for this day that this current dream will end. We’ve randomly selected those who will be moving to short-term today.”
Stuart looked down at his clipboard, flipping through the first few pages, clarifying everything before he made his announcement.
“Alright, the following, please move to short-term for sorting. Dogs with jetpacks, James Bond, the squirrels from the bird feeder and the car down the block. The following, please move to Returns. I’m sorry that today you will not be on the path to committed memory. Bobbleheads that come alive, work documents that get erased when hitting the enter button, and teeth that fall out, it’s your day for Returns.”
Audible groans out played the excited cheers from James Bond and the happy squirrels. The self deleting work documents lifted slowly in the air, flying graciously to returns.
“As for the rest of you, you’ll be moving to The Cusp,” Stuart said. “You know the drill, be prepared for possible retention should you be called upon from The Cusp.”
The crowd began to disperse before The Man in Charge spoke up.
“Thank you all, we had a great set tonight, but it’s nearly morning and he’ll be waking up soon. Rest up today, I’m sure tonight will be action-packed.”
Stuart climbed down from the podium, handing the clipboard back to The Man. The Man looked up at Stuart, grabbing the clipboard and nodded approvingly. Stuart nodded back and walked back to his desk. The controls were slowly coming to life, lights becoming brighter and the screens showing activity again. Back to it. Another days at the control of Francis, gathering facts, visions and thoughts ready to convert to dreams again tonight.
Following a deep breath, Stuart took his seat, sipped his coffee and flipped the switch. The monitors slowly began to brighten as the speakers grew louder with the sound of the morning alarm.