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Holder of Loss

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In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house you can get yourself into. When you reach the front desk, put on your most skilled face of desperation and anguish and then clutch the edge of the desk and sob the words “I've lost myself! Will he help me find me?” to the counter maid. Should she make a face of maternal love and try to console you, then they have found you, and her words of compassion are the last words of kindness you hear before your macabre demise.

Should she put on a face of disgust and spit a cruel and out of character retort of, “I’m not your mother, go find someone who cares!” you have succeeded in this part of the quest. Steel your gaze and retort with, “Fine! I’ll go where I’m loved!” then immediately turn around and walk to the door. If you vary from this exact conversation, it is advised to end your life on the spot, because no vehicle can take you far enough away from the beasts of the dark the Holder has unleashed on you.

If you have survived, close your eyes and clutch the door handle. Think of your warmest memories with the ones you love, and open the door and step through. Once you have passed through the door keep your eyes tightly clenched shut for eleven seconds, no more no less, then open them. You will be in the place and time of the happy memory you thought of, yet you will be watching as a third party. You must immediately run for cover, lest your past self see you. You will know if you have succeeded in this if you remain behind your cover for thirty seconds; for if you had been seen, the fabric of reality would have torn asunder, and both you and your past self would have been ripped from your lives and been sucked into the void, erasing you from the hearts and minds of those you will never forget.

Once you have hidden, you must wait in silence. Eventually the memory will vary from its truth and at this point you must lunge out of your hiding spot and scream at yourself, “You are an illusion, take your true form!” At this, your surroundings will fade away into darkness and all that will remain is you and your past self, its eyes now blazing with hatred that you have spoiled its fun. At this point it is best if you had come armed, or had been trained in some sort of martial art, because your past self will heave itself at you with an improbable strength you know you did not possess at the time.

You must not falter at this assault. Wait till you are only one foot from yourself, then lash out and strike the demon in the throat. If you fail, you will be torn limb from limb by your own hands. If you succeed, the creature will collapse to the ground unconscious, despite whether or not your blow was capable of such damage. You must then crouch by yourself and whisper this and this alone into its ear: “What is the loss one must suffer to succeed?”

If you whispered anything else, the apparition will regain consciousness and clutch at your ankles, toppling you over, and then proceed to disembowel you with its teeth. However, should you utter the right question, the illusion of you will fade to reveal the true Holder: a pale, naked man with no face, in its place. The man will then rise and you must gaze into exactly where his eyes would be. If your gaze falters, his punishment for your disrespect is indescribable by the human tongue.

Once the man has risen, he will begin to speak, and you will hear his gruff voice from every angle, enticing you to turn and look for the source, but you must resist. He will weave a tale of how men first faltered in the beginning of the Objects' time, forgetting themselves in their search for power. He will tell you of every man who lost his soul to his greed, and what became of him. This knowledge may not seem traumatic, but it will haunt you for the rest of your days, bringing unquestionable depression to your every waking minute.

After his speech you must respond with, “I bear no greed, I will lose all I have before I lose myself.” At this, the man’s every bone will shatter and he will crumple into a heap, his flesh reforming on the floor before you. At this grotesque sight, regardless of your mental strength, you will vomit, and then black out, collapsing into the squirming puddle of blood and flesh. When you awaken you will be outside of the home of the one you hold dearest, and in your pocket will be a wallet made out of the man’s pallid flesh. Open the wallet to find a nameless ID picturing yourself with the faceless man standing behind you.

This ID is Object 161 of 538. With it by your side, you will never forget yourself.

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