"Half-acre of ash" is the eighty-first video in the EverymanHYBRID series.
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[The screen is black for a few seconds as Vince is heard walking around. Vince is seen walking down a flight of old stairs. He pans the camera around, showing what seems to be a house instead of Fairmount.]
Vince: What..? No, no no no. This doesn't feel like a hospital. Let's see where I am.
[He pulls out his phone, messing with it off-camera. He pans the camera back up to the room beside him, where a door can be seen.]
Vince: Fucking Alabama, huh? Okay... First things first, let's get out of here.
[He makes his way towards the door, panning around the dilapidated room. It then cuts to low-quality footage with a dog barking in the background. There is a loud jingle of what sounds like car keys as the person holding the camera looks up. We see the back of Evan's head before he and the camera man begin running. The camera focuses on a transmission tower before moving back to where Evan has slowed down.]
Fairmount Jeff: [holding the camera] Fuck. Haha.
[Cut back to Vince making his way out of the abandoned house. He steps outside, looking around, pausing on a transmission tower as he does.]
Vince: What the...?
[He turns to look at the house, then goes back to panning around his surroundings.]
Vince: Let's get situated. Let's see.
[There's a jingle of car keys and then a beep nearby. He laughs quietly before turning and walking towards his car.
The screen goes black for a few seconds before a blue-tinged series of photos pops up. It's a shot of some woods, all looking similar enough to mistake them for a single photo. The opening to 'Past Lives' by BØRNS plays for almost a full minute before the song fades out and the screen goes black again.
Audio of someone digging with a shovel begins, the screen still black. We are shown several cuts of footage, all silent except for the digging. First there is footage of HABIT sitting far away on a street corner. He stands and begins walking away from the camera. Cut to a close from behind him as he stares at a tree. Then HABIT and the cameraman walking together. Then HABIT from behind again, surrounded by ripped up black bags, in an identical or at least similar set up as seen in Joke's Over. He steps up to one of the bags and inspects it. Cut to footage of trees, then to HABIT digging with his hands for something. We're then shown a lake, then HABIT holding a used shot gun shell, presumably the one that Alex buried during HABIT's trials. Cut back to HABIT and the cameraman walking together; HABIT stops and looks at the cameraman before making a shooing gesture, repeating it when it has no affect. The cameraman finally turns and walks away from HABIT. The screen goes black again before opening on footage of a bush. The digging finally stops; instead, metal scraping against metal can be heard off camera.
The camera pans over to reveal the source of the scraping sound: a visibly bloodied HABIT dragging a shovel across the concrete foundation of a shed. HABIT is holding a toothed axe wrapped in a hand-towel in his other hand. He leans the shovel against the shed and begins wiping blood off the axe, before throwing the hand-towel on the ground.]
HABIT: Are you for me?
[HABIT begins inspecting the axe before he points it at the cameraman, causing him to take a step back]
HABIT: [agitated] Are you for me? He sent you for me?
[HABIT begins twirling the axe and slowly approaches the cameraman, who continues to withdraw]
HABIT: Yeah? Sent you to... look through the eyes — you know, he thinks those are eyes? [He laughs] All that, uh, power, and no context... Eyes... for witnesses...
[HABIT raises the axe to the camera]
HABIT: For...unwitting conspirators. Unknowing accomplices.
[HABIT appears forlorn.]
HABIT: Do they matter? Just... sitting there, they're watching, they're witnessing, but... they'll be dust... and I'll be here...
[HABIT waves the axe]
HABIT: ...in this... [he exhales and begins looking around] ...place...
[HABIT points the axe at a tree behind him and bobs it]
HABIT: More of them growing...
[HABIT begins twirling the axe]
HABIT: ...evolving, changing, living... But that's all it's wanted... just more of them! And then I... get to hunt them! And eat them! Cut them, and burn them!
[HABIT begins to walk back towards the shed]
HABIT: But it's the same, yeah. It's the same, it's the same...
[HABIT begins clicking his teeth, then stops with his mouth open and stares for a moment.]
HABIT: ...but they're not. I've watched civilizations rise... [HABIT raises his arms] and fall, [and then drops them] I've watched technology advance, I've watched a lot... wood-chippers, airplanes, and bicycles! This body, was, and has changed, it has grown difficult, it has grown... [HABIT examines himself and snorts] ...unstoppable! Unstoppable...
[HABIT appears forlorn again and goes silent.]
HABIT: I've left them alone... in the dark... in... nothing!
[HABIT grabs the cameraman's shoulder]
HABIT: And they found a father! They found something.
[HABIT holds up two fingers and points to the camera]
HABIT: They changed. Adapted. Evolved.
[HABIT stares off into the distance and examines the axe's tip]
[HABIT points the axe at the camera again]
HABIT: I think it's my turn to change! Don't you?
[HABIT lowers the axe and loses his smile]
HABIT: You wouldn't know, would ya? You're empty. Empty... unstoppable.
[HABIT again shambles towards the shed, mumbling "unstoppable". He turns around and points the axe back at the camera]
HABIT: I'll get what I want.
[HABIT lifts the axe and opens his mouth as if to say something, but then closes his mouth and returns the axe to the position it was in before]
HABIT: And it'll change!
[HABIT mannerisms as if he's struggling to say something before returning to the shed]
HABIT: It'll change... maybe, uh... maybe it'll change. Maybe it'll change...
[HABIT sits down and the cameraman approaches him]
HABIT: ...maybe it'll change... maybe it'll change...
[The cameraman gets close to HABIT's face before the footage changes to Jeff and Evan running towards a transmission tower.]
Fairmount Jeff (holding the camera): There it is. We're running out of daylight, man.
[They continue running for a few more seconds before the screen goes black. A voice is heard.]
[?]: ...fucked up now.
[A groan is heard. Footage now shows Evan sitting on a concrete slab in front of a dilapidated property. Suddenly, Dr. Corenthal approaches the cameraman.]
Corenthal: Excuse me, one-fifty-one; back up please.
[The cameraman takes a few steps back, revealing that Evan is handcuffed.]
Corenthal: Evan, are you alright, man?
[Evan looks at Corenthal and seems a bit dazed. Corenthal taps him on the neck]
Fairmount Evan: Yeah?
Corenthal: We gotta get movin'.
[Corenthal raises an unlit cigar to his lips]
Fairmount Evan: Why?
[Corenthal takes a puff and removes the cigar (still unlit) from his mouth before looking around.]
Corenthal: They're all around. And the shit's starting to come down, it's gettin' heavier than before. We gotta get to that tower. You think you can move?
Fairmount Evan: Yeah...
[Evan begins to stand. Corenthal wraps his arm around him]
Corenthal: Lemme give you a hand, c'mon, 'cause we gotta move man. Lean on me, lean—
[Evan and Corenthal try to go in different directions]
Corenthal: No, this way—lean on me.
[Corenthal and Evan start walking away as the cameraman follows them. Jeff is seen just out of frame as he walks with them, putting a hand on Evan's back. Corenthal briefly looks back at the cameraman before the camera turns to film the dilapidated property.]
[The footage returns to Jeff and Evan frantically running to the transmission tower. There is brief distortion as Jeff raises the camera to record the tower itself before returning it down to continue running.]
Fairmount Jeff: [holding the camera] Here...
[The running continues]
Fairmount Jeff: [holding the camera] ...take the fuckin' camera.
[The camera falls to the ground. After a few seconds someone picks it up again. Jeff is now at the tower, holding his phone out in front of him.]
Fairmount Jeff: It's on.
Fairmount Evan: [holding the camera] Alright.
Fairmount Jeff: What do I say?
Fairmount Evan: [holding the camera] Tell him to stop watching.
Fairmount Jeff: "Please stop watching us"?
Fairmount Evan: [holding the camera] Yeah.
Fairmount Jeff: "Oh god, please stop watching"...
[The footage cuts to a mostly silent track of a car driving on a road. Suddenly it changes back to the transmission tower]
Fairmount Evan: [holding the camera, panting] What angel sent us you? [laughs] Alright, is it sent?
Fairmount Jeff: It's sent.
Fairmount Evan: [holding the camera] Let's get the fuck out of here.
[The two begin running away from the tower. After a moment there is brief distortion before the footage returns to normal.]
Fairmount Evan: [holding the camera] This place'll be crawling with them!
[Footage returns to the silent car ride, now on a different road. A passing road sign reads, "NORTH ROUTE 29 MILE 16" indicating the driver is in New Jersey. After a short while of the silent ride, the footage changes to Evan and Jeff hurriedly clamoring into a car. They continue panting as the ignition hums and the headlights turn on.]
Fairmount Jeff: [holding the camera] You think it fuckin' sent?
Fairmount Evan: Yep.
[Jeff turns the camera out the window to face the copse beside them]
Fairmount Jeff: [holding the camera] Every three fuckin' days, we get the chance...
[The footage suddenly changes back to a roast beef sandwich with cheese on a bun in a white paper basket filled with potato chips.]
Vince: We are looking at what may be my last... paid-for meal. I am officially out of cash. My phone has been kept alive... [Vince lifts a frayed charging cable into frame] ...by this wire, that I believe is on its last leg also. I went back to the apartment, um, and it was empty. No note, no direction, um, so I have just been driving around New Jersey aimlessly. Currently I am in Titusville, New Jersey, at "It's Nutts".
[Vince points the camera at the restaurant's roadside sign]
Vince: Two "t"s, very important. They are trying to be, trying to become famous according to the sign inside, they want Guy Fieri to give them a... a call.
[Vince clicks his tongue and sighs. He's silent for a moment.]
Vince: It's been strangely quiet. HABIT made it seem as though as soon as I left, the world was gonna cave in on itself, and I would find no escape. But... it's almost like those symbols that I found, those papers... I don't know... if it makes me invisible to him, or if he's afraid of it, and he's keeping his distance. But either way, nothing has touched me, nothing has even come close, nothing has even been strange... either way, there's still no sign of HABIT, and that's not good.
[Vince falls silent again before the footage changes to Corenthal, Evan, and Jeff walking in the woods.]
Corenthal: Alright boys, we're at the crossroads. This is where it matters, shit gets real here. Alright, Jeff, you know what to do.
Corenthal: Take Evan with you, you guys have to make that connection. Alright, we've only got five minutes. You gotta make sure that thing happens, otherwise we're handing off a nuclear weapon to that fucking bastard. All hell breaks loose, the world as we know it is over. I don't want to panic ya, [Jeff smiles and Evan laughs] but ya got five minutes. Check your watches.
[Jeff and Corenthal check their watches, meanwhile Evan looks at his bare, cuffed wrists, which Corenthal notices.]
Corenthal: Alright Ev, good boy. [Evan haughtily smiles] Alright, Jeff, take Evan with ya, make that connection.
Fairmount Jeff: We'll do it.
Corenthal: I love you both.
Fairmount Evan: Love ya, dad.
Corenthal: Godspeed, boys.
[Evan and Jeff take off away from the camera, meanwhile Corenthal and the cameraman continue forward.]
Corenthal: Remember, five minutes!
[Suddenly cut back to HABIT sitting against the shed. A loud hum is heard as HABIT suddenly perks up and quickly hops to his feet. He begins running towards something as the cameraman begins to follow. There is visual distortion and the screen goes black for several seconds before cutting back to Vince in the car.]
Vince: Alright, so I just got a text while I was sitting here... from a number I don't know... and it's coordinates... it says, "If you're alive, come here." [sighs] Why not?
[The screen goes black again. Cut to a footage of a large lake. A sign that says "NO SWIMMING" hangs from a tree. Whoever is filming takes a moment to film the water. The footage cuts to the cameraman rounding a tree and walking into an open, grassy area as they catch the feet of someone walking ahead of them. They lift the camera to reveal it is Vince, holding something in his left hand that he then deposits in his back pocket as he stops walking. The cameraman moves behind Vince (albeit still at a distance) and also stops walking. Vince is motionless for a moment before continuing to walk, at which point the video ends.]
- This video seemingly confirms Iteration Theory, given the context of both the BØRNS song and the apparent multiple cast members.
- HABIT's speech about seeing civilizations rise and fall suggests that he has been trapped in the iteration cycle with Evan as his recurring host for quite a while — and he wants to change that.
- The song that plays at 1:58 is Past Lives by BØRNS.
- Rabbit #151 appears as Dr. Corenthal's cameraman despite being "eliminated" in the pre-game of The Seven Trials Of Habit
- Considering the digging sounds before it is shown, the shotgun shell HABIT is holding is probably the one Alex buried as a part of the trials.