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The Holder of Silence

Do not speak. Do not sigh. Shut down any sound-making device; smash it if you must. Send away your friends and family; never see them again. And smother that damn dog.

Shoot the neighbors; they want to break it.

The silence- hear it? Pure and golden, all for you. There will be no clamor, no gasping or struggling, so long as you maintain the silence.

Walk to the institute. Make no noise and let no others blast and blare through your silence; their fists and guns and bullets must not stop you.

They must not break the silence.

When you reach the institute, hand the desk worker a blank piece of paper and they will understand.

You will be taken deep into the institute. All the while, bask in your silence: crushing you, maddening you. It wants to destroy you so that you may be part of it.

Hear that? The blood rushing through your veins? That must be silent. Tear out the noisy heart, for it has offended and must be cast aside.

Continue walking- you must walk- and be surrounded by the silence.

Bring up walls and cages to defend the silence; create punishments for those who would break it.

When you reach your cell you may once more speak, but you will not want to. You will simply wish to maintain the silence, have it surround you, be near you. Hold it for a while.

Because that Silence is Object 31 of 538. It must not be broken.

The Holder of the Speed

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask for something called "The Holder of the Speed." The worker should become motionless. Look around yourself; if everything else became motionless, you are on the right path. If you are not, no one shall know of your demise. This will make it all the worse.

You will notice that moving around and breathing will become gradually, but increasingly, difficult; this is expected, for the air slowly becomes motionless. You should explore carefully the halls surrounding you, thinking about your first great failure, but be aware that, if you take too long, you will suffocate.

Your objective is to find a child who still moves amidst all the surrounding statuesque shapes. The child will approach you with a ball, hand it over to you. Pay attention to how the ball is held. The child will then declare, "You're it." And then run outside the room, always giggling.

What you will have to do is return the ball. Careful to not be fooled by the voice echoing within the halls, for wasted time means you're closer to death by asphyxiation. As time passes, the air will become harder to cut through, requiring greater strength; warmth will slowly leave your body; droplets of water will pierce your skin. Most likely, you'll be blinded, deafened, and similarly mutilated during this chase. Vision will be impaired as everything slowly darkens, as even light itself is eventually reaching a stop.

It is certain that you will find the child in one of the hallways, under a beam of light; it could be coming from a window, a lamp, or any similar light source. You should return the ball in the same way it was given to you and attempt to escape, giving continuity to the game.

If you succeeded, the air won't be heavy anymore. You will notice every place you ran past will be damaged to some degree. Depending on where you finished your ordeal, you may have to give many explanations to the facility's administration, and somehow avoid imprisonment.

If you failed, the child will once again hand you the ball as soon as you're reached. He will then again declare, "You're it", and dash through the corridors. You will probably die, pierced by the air's humidity and suffocated, before you can reach the child a second time.

Your new-found agility is Object 32 of 538. Mentioning the child to others will earn you, at first, scorn and ridicule. To mention him a second time is to invite your demise at the hands of everyone in earshot. If you're lucky.

The Holder of Wind

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house in you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of the Wind." The receptionist will then walk off, as if you weren't even there. Follow the receptionist. After five minutes of what seems like aimless walking, the receptionist will begin to whistle. If it is a tune you recognize, then continue to follow. If you do not recognize the song, try to remember the better times of your life, as from there out you will know nothing but the endless pain of your own personal Hell.

If you find yourself humming along to the tune, the receptionist will turn to you and point you to a room on your left. Enter the room. Inside is a wide prairie filled with endless, knee-high grass. The first thing you will notice is a warm, gentle breeze playing over your face. In the distance, you will hear a faint whispering sound. If you do not hear the whisper, run out the door and close it behind you or the peaceful prairie will become your final resting place.

If the whisper persists, close the door and it will disappear. Follow the whisper as best you can. After a few steps, a young man will rise out of the grass, clothed in simple farm clothes. This man knows only the answer to one question. "What carried them away?"

The man will tell you a lazy tale. A story filled with illusion and deception, dulled by his accent. You will start to become tired and may want to lie down and sleep for a while in the comfy grass, but do not. For if you do, you will never awaken from your slumber.

Once the man is done rambling, he will ask you a question. "Do you really want it?" The laziness induced by the scenery will make you want to say no, but resist and take the wind chimes he offers you. The door you came in will then appear in front of you, allowing you to leave in peace.

These chimes are Object 33 of 538. When the wind causes these chimes to sound, another Object is near, as is the end of all hope.

The Holder of Oblivion

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house in you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of Oblivion." If the attendant stares at you and swallows audibly, follow him to a room deep within the building, far deeper than you thought possible. The attendant will open the door and give you a fearful look. If you are brave, enter the room. If you are craven, flee now.

Inside the room, there is only a chair. Sit down in it. If at any time you begin to feel fear, get up and leave. You are still free to escape. If you choose to stay, you must sit and wait until the lights in the room flicker. Do not stand. Do not get up. If you are not sitting down when the lights flicker, then you will plummet into the void between worlds, a meal for its grotesque denizens.

When the lights flicker, you must shut your eyes immediately. Gazing upon the void will destroy your mind. Only when you hear a man clear his throat may you open your eyes. You will be in a dark dungeon, bound to the chair by a web of ebony chains. Surrounding you will be heads impaled upon blood-soaked pikes, and standing before you will be a man wearing an executioner's uniform. Stare him in the eyes; do not move your gaze and do not show even the slightest tinge of fear, for if you do, he will add your head to his collection.

The only thing you may speak without being beheaded is the question, "What will they bring?" The executioner will laugh an inhuman laugh, and then the impaled heads will begin to speak. They will speak of horrors, of executions, of their individual ends, but you must not move your gaze from the executioner, or you too will be speaking of your death. Eventually, he will speak of his own end, of what they brought to him. When he finishes, he will remove his cowl, revealing a skeleton's face. With a cackle, he will wave his hands, and the world will plunge into darkness.

When the light returns, you will be sitting peacefully in the lobby of the institution. In your lap will be the executioner's cowl.

That cowl is Object 34 out of 538. You have seen what they bring; will you stop them?

The Holder of Fear

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house in you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of Fear". If the time is right, the attendant will lead you to a closet with no floor. With a malicious grin, the worker will shove you into the hole and close the door.

As you fall through the abyss, you cannot feel any fear. If you do, you will immediately hit the spike-ridden bottom of the pit and meet a gruesome death. If you remain resolute, your fall will eventually slow and stop, leaving you in a room soaked in darkness. Into the darkness, you must speak only one thing: "What is their weapon?"

Immediately the room will be illuminated. Surrounding you will be everything that you fear, and in the center will be a creature who will take the appearance of your greatest fear. Not even once can you flinch or shrink away from this creature, or it will dismember you in the most painful way possible.

You must stare at your greatest fear while it tells you its story in excruciating detail. It will tell you of all the fears in the world, from the tiniest to the greatest, in all of their horribleness. When it is finished, the creature will ask what you fear. Now you must confess all of your fears to the creature, without looking around the room. If you miss even one, you will be consumed by your own terror, leaving nothing but a shell remaining.

If you confess all of your fears, the creature will scream, and the scream will send you hurtling through the wall behind you. When you stop moving, you will be across from the closet you entered earlier, and in the closet will be a mirror.

That mirror is Object 35 of 583. It reflects your greatest fear, and that is their weapon.

The Holder of Faith

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or religious institution you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, close your eyes and ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of Faith". The worker will look at you in abstract confusion, shake his head, and go back to his work. If you wait for 3 full minutes, he will sigh and walk you to a custodians closet. He will lead you inside and lock you there. The door will not open, and it will be pitch black. Slowly the darkness will begin to describe, in the brightest of white words, in a language you have never read and voices you have never heard, speaking the foulest blasphemies your body can withstand.

Should the soliloquy ever stop, fall to your knees and clasp your hands, screaming every prayer you know. If the writing does not continue, curse the god that has put you into existence.

If the writing does continue, stand quickly and race down the tunnel. There the tunnel will open up into a large dome, and you will see a young girl in white, staring at you with her hair fallen down into her face. Do not look at your hands, or they will peel the flesh from your bones. She will respond to only one question: "Why do they fear"?

She will look up to you and her mouth will blurt out every wrong that has ever occurred in the name of a god, and some that you must believe happened beyond your reality. She will then fall to the ground screaming in horrible agony as she is consumed by a white flame.

That ash is Object 36 of 538. It will one day be mixed with yours.

The Holder of Confusion

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of Confusion." The worker will initially ignore you, but if you wait for one full minute, she will rise and motion for you to follow her. After following her down a series of dimly lit hallways, you will come to a dead-end corridor with no doorways. The worker will motion to the end of the hallway, and promptly leave you without a word.

You must walk to the end of the hallway, without speaking a word. Once you reach the end, place your hands upon the wall to reveal that it is an illusion which you may walk through. If you are scared, or unsure of what is behind the wall when you step through, or have any doubts at all, you will simply walk off of the plane of existence forever, never to be heard from again.

But if you believe in yourself, and believe answers lie beyond the wall, when you step through you will appear in a bright white room with many paths. Some lead into the distance, others appear to lead nowhere at all, yet others appear to defy understanding, and lead to suffering that only the most damnable of all souls can comprehend.

The path you seek is the one that lies ahead of you. It appears to continue on for eternity. While walking, you must say nothing, no matter how long the trip appears to take, and should the room begin to darken halfway through your trip down the path, your only option is to sit down and weep silently, for you are now nothing more than nourishment for the most grotesque and cursed demon of them all.

However, if the room remains an almost unfathomably perfect white, your trip down the path will be without peril, and you will safely come to a door. At this point, you need do nothing, as the door opens to you to reveal a room which appears an impossibility. It is not big, but not small. Not lit, but not dark. It appears to be everything, and nothing. Equals and opposites are meaningless in this room. It is said that most who enter are driven to a maddening insanity and begin to claw their own flesh off, or disembowel themselves with their bare hands, all while laughing manically. Never dying, this will be their fate for eternity.

Should you manage to not be driven to insanity, you will notice a nondescript figure standing in the center of the madness. It appears to be human, yet at the same time, something much more hellish. You will not be able to comprehend this entity visually, but you must not repulse at its sight, nor can you say anything to it. It will begin to speak to you many events. Some of which you know are true. Others you know are lies. Some which you are unsure of. The entity will become increasingly agitated that you are ignoring its nonsense. You MUST refrain from saying anything at all, until the entity falls silent briefly, and then asks:

"What would you do, if they were all brought together?"

To this, you must very firmly reply:

"Everything that you would do. Including what you wouldn't."

The entity will stare at you blankly for a moment. If it doesn't believe you, it will simply walk away and leave you there, forever in darkness. If it does believe you, however, it will reach its hand out and give you a small, seemingly immaterial glowing object. This is the "Beast's Resolve."

That is Object 37 of 538. No matter how indecisive you are, no matter how unsure the world becomes, you alone must know what to do if they all come together.

The Holder of Accuracy

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house you can get yourself to. When you reach the receptionist's desk, ask to visit someone who calls themselves "The Holder of Accuracy." Should a look of terror and sorrow fall over the receptionist's face, they have found you, and no amount of running will save you.

However, if their face shows an expression of excitement and disbelief, you've come to the right place. They will take you to the nearest door and open it for you. You must walk through the doorway exactly three seconds after they open it. No more, no less. After walking through, the receptionist will close and lock the door behind you. You will find that you are now standing in a firing range with spots taken on either side of you as far as you can see. The people who take these spots are Seekers that have failed. They are doomed to an eternity of thoughtless enslavement, unable to summon enough free will to end their own lives with the weapons so tantalizingly close at hand.

Take the one open spot that is directly in front of you. You will notice that there is a rifle conveniently placed on a nearby table. As soon as you pick it up, a target will appear at the end of the firing range. You will have five rounds, and you must hit the center of the target with each of them. If you miss the first shot, the Seeker to your left will put their gun to your head and pull the trigger. If you hit the first time but then miss another shot, you will join the Seekers that have failed in their mindless stupor.

If you manage to hit the bullseye all five times, however, the firing range will disappear, and you will find yourself in an empty black void standing before a man dressed in a black trench coat and a dark brown fedora, but you will not be able to see his face. This is The Holder. If he is smoking a cigar, then he does not find you worthy of continuing your journey, and will shove you into the void to fall for eternity. If he is smoking a cigarette, then he believes you are capable of progress. He will beckon for you to speak. You must ask him, "How many people tried to stop them?"

He will then tell you in great detail how many people tried to stop the objects from being lost, how many rounds were fired, how many battles were fought, how many wars were started, amongst other things. Don't worry. Few have gone insane from this information. The man will then hand you the rifle you used in the firing range. any round that you load into this rifle will never spread and will always shoot where you aim. The man will give you a respectful nod and walk into the void. You will feel a strong gust of air and then you will find yourself standing in front of the place you call home.

That rifle is Object 38 of 538. How many shots will it take to stop them?

The Holder of Absence

In any city, in any country, go to any mental institution or halfway house you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of Absence". Should the person at the front desk try to convince you that the person you wish to visit is no longer there, ask to visit their cell nonetheless. At this point, the receptionist shall show a look that can only be defined as emotionless. The receptionist will lead you down a long wall with many doors on either side until you reach an iron door with one barred window on it. They will open the door for you but lead you no further. Beyond the door is darkness, nothing more.

As you step into the darkness, the door will slam shut behind you. You are now trapped and the only way to go is forward. You will not be able to see the ground, the roof, or the walls. Be aware, you may be walking for a very long time, possibly days. As you walk, you will begin to feel cold and empty inside. You will feel as if your soul has left your body as a shell. In time you may hear footsteps that echo loudly. Stop immediately and wait. If the footsteps do not stop, you must sit down and wait until they do. If they begin to grow even louder, then you will surely perish by an unimaginable horror. If the footsteps do stop, you must press forward until you reach another iron door, illuminated by a light behind it. Open it and step inside.

Inside will be a pitch black room. Only a small circle of light upon the floor can be seen, lit by a small candle. Behind the light will be a chair with a coat on it. Approach the chair but do not sit in it, no matter how long you have been walking. Wait until the candle burns out. When it does, reach out and take the coat. The next time you blink, you will find yourself in front of the desk in the mental institution or halfway house. Reach into the right inside breast pocket of the coat and pull out a singed sheet of paper with red ink. Do not read this ink or the Holder of Absence will become present and destroy you with unthinkable pain and anguish.

This paper is Object 39 of 538. Keep him absent. Keep them from coming all together.

The Holder of the Abandoned

In any city, in any country, go to any orphanage or halfway house you can get yourself to. When you reach the front desk, ask to visit someone who calls himself "The Holder of the Abandoned". The attendant will look up at you with lonely eyes, and lamely motion for you to follow her. She will lead you through a maze of corridors. Do not look back and keep on her heels or you will be forever lost in this maze. She will show you a door, crumbling with age. She will then suddenly vanish, abandoning you to your fate. Push forward or be lost forever.

After you open the door you'll be confronted with a hedge maze of slowly dying bushes. Follow your gut as you navigate or risk losing yourself to an eternity of wandering. Listen carefully. Every step you make will ring loudly through the still air. Should the sound stop, stand still and don't dare to move. If you hear a buzzing sound, shout out, "Go back, I do not need your help"! If the buzzing persists, then run. Run for your life. Your body, your mind, your very soul will be in great danger. Do not stop, no matter what you may hear or see. Should they catch you, you will be gnawed eternally by the sharp fangs of every problem that has ever plagued mankind. If you escape, then you may consider yourself blessed with luck few have had before.

Eventually you'll make it to the end. Before you will stand at a golden gate; knock once, and it will swing open for you. Slowly enter the courtyard. Inside you will find a beautiful man in his late forties wandering around aimlessly. Ask him this and nothing else: "Where were they abandoned"? If this man attacks you, then count yourself lucky; you will never see the end of this. If not, then he will show you. He will show you every hidden crevice, every basement lair, every corpse, every madman, every evil place that these things have tainted. You will probably go insane. If not, then you are truly destined to see this task to the end. The man will have left you by the end of this slideshow. In his place you will find a map and a broken watch. The watch shows how much time you have left in this race. You may not keep it, and you will not remember the time that it shows.

That map is Object 40 of 538. Use it or not, but the knowledge has escaped, and you're not the only one that holds it.

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