Sunday, January 18, 2009

Alembical: "Now You See Us"

The final story in Alembical is Ray Vukcevich's "Now You See Us".

Here we have the story of Maggie and David. They met at a county fair in Oregon. He was besotted immediately, and she responded but also talked about her theory of how time worked, that Jerry Garcia was "dead now . . . but it won't always be now."

Years later David is off writing a book in Norway, Maggie studying with Time Monks in Finland. Without getting into too much detail, after David's plane crashes just outside his destination he discovers a whole lot of weirdness going on. Maggie loops back into David's story eventually.

The exact nature of the weirdess is undefined until late in the story. In a sense this doesn't matter because for the first half (or so) of the story I was intrigued as to where Vukcevich is bringing the story. How would this time thing work? What was going on in Norway? Vukcevich gets at the answers to these questions.

And yet, despite the fact that Vukcevich has some good ideas, "Now You See Us" never quite comes together in any satisfying way. In the end "Now You See Us" comes across as a bit of a mess. Everything flowed through the end semi-naturally enough, and I can't say exactly what didn't work, except...

"Now You See Us" didn't work.

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