gaze long into the abyss

It's not a coincidence.

Things started changing when I lost control of my car and crashed into the garage of our house. It had been locked since we moved in, and we'd never opened it--the landlord always put off giving us new keys for it, and we didn't have anything we needed stored so we didn't really bother.

Nothing was inside. I don't mean it was empty, I mean it was full of void--inside was a blackness that seemed to be pulling the car inward. I got out as quick as I could and stood at the edge of the void and stared into it for a while. It never started making any sort of sense, but by the time I looked away the sun had gone down and it had devoured the entirety of the car, and the garage was gone as well. Now our driveway terminated in a shapeless hole in reality.

We did what any reasonable people would do in the situation, of course. First we called the landlord to complain. He agreed to lower our rent until he could get it fixed. Second, we had a party. We set up caution tape to try to keep people from getting devoured, but mostly it wasn't a big deal. We trusted our friends not to do anything too stupid--and, privately, we joked that if it did eat someone it's not like they'd complain.

The party was a hit, so we decided to landscape around the yawning rift in spacetime. It presented some interesting challenges, but also some interesting opportunities. The neighbors seemed to like the final results. Some of them tried to build knock-offs, but there's only so much you can do with mundane materials to imitate the warping of the fabric of the universe.

We held viewings. We let the media come and talk to us. We became famous for the abyss, and it was actually quite the lucrative venture. I don't know about anyone else in the house, but I made far more than my day job ever could have--enough that I didn't feel worried when I quit, and enough that nobody at work begrudged me the decision.

I never spent any of it.

At night I'd go out and sit by the void and stare. "Why do you exist?" I'd ask it. Sometimes I'd try the same question without the "why" on the front. All of these events, despite what we told ourselves when we planned them, weren't just capitalizing on our fortune. They were excuses to be close to the void, to deal with it, to stand just inches from its inexorable fingers, and probably most of all, to share all that with others.

But it was never enough. We gave a lot of things into the void, and it never gave anything back.

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