I didn’t notice it at the time of writing but this story has certain elements in common with a children’s cartoon I watched when I was little called Mr Benn. Mr Benn would enter a fancy dress shop, put on a costume, go through a magic door and have an adventure that was commensurate with the costume that he had adourned.
I wouldn’t say that this was an inspiration, but the similarities struck me when I was editing, so there you are, now you know.
This story asks the question: what if you could somehow receive messages from parallel universes and alternate realities? What form would those messages take and how might they change your life?
The rest followed from that. I needed someone in a bad place, and I needed a way to slip him messages from somewhere else. I remembered renting a suit from a tailor, I remembered going to weddings and funerals, I remembered what it felt like to be alone and bereft. Maybe I remembered Mr Benn, I don’t know. Hopefully, these memories are mine and not messages from another version of me in another reality.
But then again, how would I know?
- Published in jamscary.com (May 22nd 2022)