May 27

Walking down the stairs to the main alcove of the apartment building, I hear the sound. Most of the time, when I’m called up to be ‘on the job’, as it were, it’s the sound of a car crash. Peter said that there’s different ways my brain lets me know that something’s wrong with my particular patch of time. It differs for each individual Interloper, of course, so he couldn’t tell me why I hear it as a crash. But, after about five months, I’ve started to pick up on the differences in the alarms that I hear.
This one is a bell. It’s not an easy sound to describe, really, because it’s a whole bunch of different kinds of bells in one, single toll of a bell. I only call it a toll because it has that impression, of being grand, loud, and long. But its pitch is all wrong. If there was some way to make a butler’s call bell sound like it was coming out of the bell that bullied the Liberty Bell in the bell schoolyard, then it would come close to what I didn’t hear– but could have if it just wasn’t so… beautiful. But there’s something else in the pitch, too, something that makes it stick in your head, right behind your eyes and in your sinuses, triggering the waterworks. This is an impossible bell.

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