As mold overcomes the stagnancy of an environment reigned by shade, a morphing sprout breaks free to shine amongst the dull. Though suffering from pain and fatigue, it perseveres, understanding that this process toward its goal is inevitable. In admiration, the neighboring buds cry out for aid, and the sprout extends a hand to help them as much as possible. But as soon as the other buds discover the difficulty in maintaining independent beauty, they unhinge from the sprout to remain stationary. Solely absorbing the fundamental nourishment for simple survival, the buds begin feeding back into the loop that they once tried to break free from.
Frustrated with the deceit and dishonesty prevalent in society, a man decides to dismantle the town structure using his intellect and witty trickery. He utilizes the people's weak principles as leverage against them, hoping to prompt a realization that could lead them to building a much stronger foundation of consciousness. But his plans misfire, and he's captured by the townsfolk, imprisoned, and put on display in a transparent cell which sits in the village square. They study their captive like a deprived primate, and entertained by his suffering, hope he fulfills his own punishment by committing suicide.
Fear of White Walls
After another season of failed crops, a farmer contemplates giving up his harsh, unpredictable lifestyle. But that very night, he's visited by a formidable shadowy figure, who mysteriously tempts him with a life of promise and ease. Skeptical and fearful of this strange lure, the farmer uses his own strength to ward off the figure, and much to his own surprise, is successful! With a new sense of confidence and ambition now filling his veins, he begins preparation for the next season, while ivory wings slowly begin sprouting from his shoulders. Months pass, and yet his crops still produce nothing. His hope wanes, and in response, the wings slowly begin tearing off from his body, painfully reminding him of his tepid past. Amidst the agony, he prays for the shadowy figure to return once more, so he can be given a second chance.
A Sterile Draft
A prophet enters the world and is immediately accosted by the reigning beasts of the present. They feel threatened by his emergence, and so the prophet confronts them with his psychic knowledge, exposing all their weaknesses and falsities. Fearing the descent of their integrity, they plead with the seer, who vows to spare their disclosure if they can rebuild themselves with purity and truth. The beasts attempt this approach, but find it much more arduous and cumbersome than their usual angle. They give up quickly and relapse, in order to get the most from their lowest energy output. The prophet is then left to interpret the fate of their decision.
Subconsciously avoiding a constructive self-evaluation, an aimless wanderer hastily seeks prophetic signs, divine symbolism, and patterns in nature for some personal guidance or reassurance. But when his own ploy is suddenly unveiled, he persuades himself to take initiative, only to find paths that are heavily trodden upon. Old age has stolen his agility and youthful ambition, leaving him with an inability to begin his own course. He reaches out to successors for consultation and consolation, but is only handed plastic principles and an invitation to join their pursuits, so he can adopt an identity under their wing. He declines out of suspicion and retreats to a natural environment to take pleasure in eating society's forbidden fruit. Though indecisive and against the odds, he acknowledges his naivety, choosing ambiguity over the security of being a gear in the machine of another.
Upon the Clearing
A tribe of cynical, judgmental, and hyperactive folks are unable to elect a leader, which puts them on the brink of mental combustion. But one day, in the distance, they witness a ceremonial ritual of pain and transcendence taking place, and are quick to become envious of this primitive form of self discovery. Naturally, they hope for the worst with the individual at hand, who must undergo his observers' scrutiny in order to become a figure of medicine. But when the individual survives the ceremony, he is praised by both tribes, and all want to feed off his glory. The acknowledgment and power is invigorating, but he's saddened to realize that the praise won't last forever, despite the pain and strife he's endured for his accomplishment. Others are proud for the moment, but the emptiness of his own personal purpose is a far worse pain that inevitably awaits his confrontation.
Persona Non Grata
A lone traveler, cold and hungry from an unsuccessful hunt, stumbles upon a small village hidden deep within a forest. He approaches, and at first finds its people to be warm, welcoming, and energetic with life. But as time passes, he notices inconsistencies in the way their village operates. No one appears to work or sleep, and their over-indulgence in festivities seems endless. It feels like a paradise to the traveler, who's interested in learning how they're able make this system work. The villagers decline to explain, and warn him that prying will only cause discrepancies in their flow. But the outsider cannot help his curiosity, and because of his persistence and their constant rebuttals throughout his stay, the villagers lose their patience, morphing into evil, aggressive creatures in order to protect their ways. In this event, the traveler is forced to decide whether he should flee or become part of their utopia with no questions asked.
The Fourth Wall
A thick, heavily polluted environment hosts a wave of bustling drones, who seek involvement with any sort of activity that will distract them from entering a consistent stream of consciousness. Deep within this mass, lies an innocent victim with no means of escape. He takes to hiding within himself for self-preservation, only to realize that this elevates his feelings of isolation. In order to avoid internal combustion, he absorbs his surroundings and everything trivial that goes along with the course, filtering out only the dense redundancies that could permanently damage one's psyche. He seeks remedies to not only numb his pain, fear, and frustration over this adaptation, but to also generate a point of stability that enables one to reflect and ponder their situation in a healthy manner. Though aware he's being broken down along this journey, he hopes that his patience and persistence will provide a permanent escape before he's indefinitely consumed by the abyss of nothingness.