VOLUME INDEX



A tribute to artists and the homesick everywhere. Projects like Vexations wouldn't be anything without artists.



 
 
 




“I think I know why it brought you back.”

“Why?”

“So that you could say goodbye,” Vex said. “When this house burned down, your family was on vacation, you said. When someone puts so much effort, so much of themselves into something, they leave a lasting impression on the world. Those impressions don’t just vanish because they were destroyed—things only vanish when they’re forgotten.”

Katrina placed her hand on the wall and closed her eyes. “I will never forget.”

“I think that you did forget something, in fact. Something very important. Your art is unfinished.”

The artists eyes flashed up and stared at Vex, daring her to criticize her childhood work.

“We have been through every room in this house. There’s a lot of your life here. It’s amazing. But I think that when this place burned down, it lacked the one thing that makes every artwork complete—in every room we’ve been through, I haven’t seen your name written even once—you never had a chance to sign it.”

“I see,” Katrina said. “All these years, the lifework of my childhood self has gone orphaned.” She canted her head again and closed her eyes, speaking to the house. “It was good to see you again, old friend, but I understand if you desire to rest.”

From a hidden pocket, she produced a large silver pen. The room trembled when she pressed the tip to the wall. Like a fluid exhalation, she swept the pen across the paneling and wrote her name with an elegant and controlled script, the leg of the ‘K’ broadly slicing beneath her first name.

And, when the last bold stroke was placed, something sighed. The very air seemed to shiver, boards creaked, glass rattled, wood crunched. Both Vex and Katrina fled from the house then, rushing out onto the lawn as the entire structure began to quiver in a terrible fashion. The very foundation quaked as it bent into itself. The windows were the first to go, swallowed up into nothing. As they watched, the house crumpled into itself with an upwards motion, the foundation uprooted from the ground, the temple-entrance and the pediment folded up like the doors on a bus, and it all twirled inwards like a tornado.

As quickly as it started, the commotion ended. Abrupt like a smack to the face, the column of light and collapsing materials crashed back onto the raw dirt where the foundation once stood. A deafening roar exploded from the vicinity and it threw up a huge cloud of dust that billowed in a rolling fog of white and grey.

When the dust cleared the house was gone, completely vanished, but what remained in its stead brought a smile to their lips.

Piled there, in the midst of the lot, was a mountain of picture frames. Each one displayed different aspects of the house that Vex had seen within. Not a single bit of artwork had been forgotten. And, on every one, the brilliant signature of Katrina’s sliver penned name leapt out like a banner, declaring her as the artist.


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