The Upside Down

Once again, I have to preface this story with a little something of a note. Because this story is actually a multi-part story, I’ll just put the note here instead of condensing it into one of those “Author’s Notes” I have spread out over my other articles and stories.

This story isn’t well written. It’s not exceptionally anything, but it does have an interesting premise that I think could be expanded on further, at some later date. I don’t remember where I got the idea for this story. Maybe it was from a movie, or a book, or some writing prompt I found online. Regardless, I found the idea and ran with it, and this is the result.

I actually like this story, even if it’s a bit goofy sometimes, and one of my older pieces of literature (if you could call it that). Enjoy.

The Day of the Upside

Oftentimes, the strangest things happen when we least expect it. When everything appears to be normal, suddenly, out of the blue, a drastic change can occur, sending our world spiraling out of control. But nothing like this had happened in such a long time, especially in Crownhill. The town of Crownhill was, in general, a peaceful place. With a whopping population of 2500 people, the occupants of this town spent their leisure days participating in community events, such as bowling on Saturdays, and bingo every Sunday morning. And sometimes, just sometimes, when they were feeling especially venturous, they went on an excursion down the treacherously thin roads that led from their small town to the outside world, and visited the local theater in the nearby Big City, as they called it.

For Milo, living here had always felt natural to him. He didn’t care for the outside world, it was too busy, and crowded, and clustered. The fact of the matter was that ambitions of any kind had never even occurred to him. He had never had a lofty goal in life or a dream to follow. He merely enjoyed the comfort of his rented home, and working at The Crown Diner (the prominent local diner) as a waiter. His life had fell into a routine that was almost never broken – and he couldn’t have been happier about it.

Every Monday morning, he woke up at 8:00 (give or take how long it took him to convince himself to get out of bed), got ready, ate a bagel with a glass of milk, and was at work by 9:00. When he arrived at work, he prepared for the opening at 10:00. He made sure that everything was in order, swept the floors, wrote the daily specials in chalk on the menu, and did any other odd job that his manager needed help with. As soon as the diner had opened, the people of Crownhill began to trickle in, like everything in their town – slowly, but methodically. This was one of the only two diners in town, and it was the marginally more popular one, seeing as it had been there longer, and the locals liked consistency. After work, Milo would walk home, enjoying the evening air. When he arrived back at his apartment, he would spend the rest of the evening reading a book from what he called his “collection” (a small shelf filled with books he had deemed worthy of keeping, set into the wall by his bed). Once he began to grow tired, he would set down his book, turn off the lamp, which sat on the stand by his bed and go to sleep. On the weekends, Milo would attend the community events, as well as spend time walking through the gorgeous and well-maintained Crownhill Park (which the sleepy little town had been spending a majority of their budget on, seeing as they had nothing else to upkeep).

One Friday, when Milo was preparing to set down his book and go to sleep, he felt a sudden lurch in his stomach. Had he forgotten something? He wondered. His stomach stayed in “lurch mode” for at least 30 seconds, before slowly fading back to its original content and full state. This puzzled Milo. He usually never forgot anything too important. There weren’t even many important things that he had to remember. He went over his checklist several times in his head (”Are the diner doors locked? Are the apartment doors locked? Did I forget to collect my tips…”) before dismissing this feeling as ludicrous and turning his attention back to falling asleep. As he drifted off to sleep, somewhere in Milo’s mind he was aware of this feeling slowly returning.

The Day of the Down

As Milo woke up, he was vaguely aware that his face felt squished and uncomfortable against a slightly bumpy surface. His mind was still foggy, and he tried to figure out why this was. His pillow? What had happened? Had he fallen off of his bed during the night? But no, his floor was carpeted, and the surface that he was lying on was hard…so that couldn’t be it. Maybe he had forgotten to set down his book last night before he fell asleep. As his senses began to sharpen, Milo became aware of the “lurch mode” in his stomach from last night, still there – and if anything, it had gotten more prevalent. This made him much more alert, and now he began to worry.

Slowly, he pushed himself up, turned over, and began to sit up – but as his eyes focused, he stopped short and stared, because this was crazy! He must be dreaming. It had to be a dream. Of course, that would be it. He stood up, mind spinning from what he was seeing, and quickly made his way over to the sink, past overturned desks and scattered books. Any feelings of grogginess had vanished quicker than a jolt of electricity, leaving his mind sharp. Still, he continued to make his way over to his sink, convinced that this would fix it. Once he reached it, he turned both of the faucets on full blast, intending to splash the water on his face and wake himself up.

But it didn’t work quite as he had planned. As he stared wide-eyed at this new development, he began to grow frantic. Even if this was just a dream, it was going too far for him. He turned off the faucets and ran headlong towards his front door, fully intending to step in front of a car and force himself to wake up. After a moment’s difficulty forcing the door open, he started outside – and suddenly, as he crossed into the outdoors, his mind lurched with horror as he realized he had made a grave mistake. But by then it was too late. He felt himself falling down…or was it up? With only seconds to spare, his reflexes kicked in, and he found himself grabbing the frame of the door, where he hung on. Even if this was a dream, his survival instinct prevented him from letting go.

Somewhere, in the back of his mind, he now knew that this wasn’t a dream. Somehow, in the sleepy town of Crownhill, the impossible had happened. This was real, and he had to get back inside and figure out what to do. With all the strength he had, he slowly and carefully pulled himself back into his house. When he finally made it, panting hard, he sat down on his ceiling and finally realized to the full extent what had happened.

Gravity had, somehow, been reversed.

The Day of the Great Decision

Still reeling from this realization, Milo caught his breath and tried to figure out what to do next. There was no way he could leave his house without instantly being flung into outer space. Suddenly, he came up with a plan. He could try calling someone! Maybe he could call his boss. He heaved himself off the floor and made his way over to his bedroom, where he began to look for his phone. As soon as he remembered where he had set his phone though, he felt a sinking feeling. Last night, before he got in bed, he had set his phone on his heavy antique bed stand, which was now overturned, sitting upside down on the ceiling.

He heaved the stand-up and looked under it. There sat his phone, smashed into little bits and pieces. As he stared at his phone, he began to panic. He had no way of communication, and he couldn’t go outside of his house. Milo sat down against his wall, trying to think. If only there was a way to get from house to house, he could make his way to the diner, or the town hall, where other people might be congregated. Then he would be able to find out what happened. As the power flickered off, Milo looked around. But of course. With gravity reversed, there were bound to be some problems with the power poles. And suddenly, an idea struck him. A crazy idea, that seemed to go against everything he had ever stood for, but an idea that just might work.

Milo sprang to action. He leaped up and ran to his kitchen window, where the power line entered his house. He opened the window. Suddenly thinking better of it, he ran from room to room, gathering anything he thought would be useful, which he stuffed into his single backpack, that he had owned since he was 15 (which was the last year he had done anything adventurous). Several water bottles, a cheap pocket knife, a few cans of beans and some cans of ravioli, a bit of string, a jacket, and a few other things. Once he had collected everything that he thought he needed, he made his way back to the now-open kitchen window. He stood there for a minute, steeling himself. Then, with a burst of resolve, he began to climb out, and down…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *