Light is nothing without darkness. Darkness is nothing without void. Void is nothing without existence. And existence is nothing without you. Welcome, to night vale.
Since noon today, there appears to be a horde of zombies approaching town from the direction of Desert Bluffs, walking desperately away from their town as if not even the gods themselves could force them back. I must say that, given the circumstances, I don’t blame them. Desert Bluffs sucks. They are just so bad. So, while I do feel for their unfortunate residency, I cannot condone these zombies coming into our desert town. While still deserving of their basic rights as arguably sentient, brain-eating, cannibalistic beings, they are simply a gross health hazard. They have to go. And while I pity them for being misguided creatures from a town so barren, so desolate, that it would transform it’s citizens into inhuman shadows of the proud beings they once were (really, Desert Bluffs? For shame,) I, as a proud, responsible Night Valian, will do everything in my power to get them out. Another outbreak in the population is the last thing we need.
So board up your windows, and make all of your proper and necessary sacrifices, because we need to be as cautious as we can get. My personal recommendation for sacrificial offerings is two pints of lamb’s blood, or if that is unavailable, cabbage. We all know how much the all-powerful deities living under your porch love cabbage stew.
This just in. According to the the Sheriff’s Secret Police, a special task force from the Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency will be coming near town later due to the zombie infestation. Seeing as for the most part they’ve only watched quietly over our town from afar and occasionally borrowing an unwanted child wandering aimlessly in the sand wastes, the SSP has no idea what this could mean for Night Vale and it’s citizens. We can only hope that it’s bad news for Desert Bluffs.
Alright, I just received an anonymous message stating that the zombies here are obviously an excuse by the government to help control the mas- you know what? I’m done. I think we all know who sent in this nonsense, don’t we, Steve Carlsberg. Ugh, really Steve? Again? Just because you don’t trust in this great town’s establishment doesn’t mean you have to so rudely spread such lies. We all know that, yes, sometimes the government will purposely create a mass pandemic, but they never do so unless they have a very good reason. So shut up, Steve. Go live off on a mountain somewhere.
In other news, a strange man has come into town today. He says his name is Phil. There’s something oddly familiar about him, and he appears to know his way around town with unnatural accuracy, but such things aren’t really worth noting seeing as they are perfectly normal. At least 1 in every 10 strange visitors are afflicted with an foreboding, powerful sense of belonging. In fact, this knowledge is so common I don’t see why I’m bothering to mention it. So, more on this story as it continues.
Hiram McDaniels, the dashing, caring mayoral candidate (who is literally a 5-headed dragon,) was seen volunteering at the orphanage today. Not entirely sure how I know that, or how anyone knew to inform me, seeing as only the dead and those currently orphaned, both of which are not allowed to communicate with anyone else, are able to actually see the orphanage, but is that really important? What matters here is that Hiram is showing us just how much he values his community. Not only is what he doing chivalrous and responsible, it’s nearly impossible! Only a truly dedicated man (or in this case an eighteen-foot, five-headed dragon) could do that. After all, ‘the human youth is the human future,’ is it not? I could not think of a better mayor for Night Vale.
Back to the story of our newest visitor. He seems to have no trouble with our current zombie infestation, shooting their heads off if they come too near him. According to Larry Leroy, out on the edge of town, he was earlier seen heading towards the Abandoned Missile Silo. We do not yet know what this could mean, but it might be important. Keep an eye out, listeners, for we can never be too sure of what this man’s motives are.
Oh. And, apparently, this man, Phil, has been seen… out and about with everyone's favourite scientist, Carlos. I’m not sure what to think of this. They were seen drinking coffee together, discussing things amiably, and shooting the heads off of nearby zombies. Now, while free to choose his own friends and acquaintances, I would have hoped my dear, perfect Carlos would be a bit more careful. We do not yet know if this ‘Phil’ is safe, and it would be a better idea to have someone else, an easier to replace citizen, test to see is he’s psychotic, homicidal, or likes guacamole. We wouldn’t want anyone to hurt Carlos, and he needs to be more cautious.
And now, a word from our sponsors. The sky shines like a million sons, encompassed in darkness. The moon hangs low in the midafternoon sky. Remember nothing, yet know everything. The truth is a lie. Do not forget to believe in it. Chipoltes, food with integrity.
More on the zombie situation. It appears it was as we suspected and feared. They are, in fact, from Desert Bluffs. It is a confirmed fact that they were created by StrexCorp Synernists Incorporated, more commonly known only as Strex. The zombies are dangerous, and will steal your garden gnomes. Do not attempt to save your garden gnomes. It will cost you your life. Remember to keep your doors and windows barred.
And on a more personal note: Dear Carlos, stay inside the coffee shop where you are currently enjoying a white chocolate pumpkin mocha with a double shot of espresso and extra whip cream with Phil, who I am not at all jealous of, no, why would you think that, and of whom I do not want to remind just who your loving, caring, and undeniably loyal boyfriend is. So Carlos, no matter how scientifically tempting it may be, do not approach the zombies.
Breaking news. There appears to be a large, volatile isolated thunderstorm directly above the StrexCorp factory. Now I’m not sure if this is karma, mother nature exacting her revenge upon the horrible, horrible town of Desert Bluffs, or something else entirely, but I am thankful. It’s about time someone put them in their place. And if the metallic grinding sounds, high-pitched squeals, gunshots, and supersonic booming noises are anything to go by, that’s exactly what’s going on.
And while I am not 100% certain on this fact, it seems likely that the Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency is at least partially responsible for the current going-ons in the destruction of Desert Bluffs. If this isn’t proof that the authority cares, I don’t know what is. I think the next time we see one of our helpful officials about, whether they be Sheriff’s Secret Police, City Council, of Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency, we should take the time to say ‘thank you.’
Or, if you’re feeling especially thankful or have the need to bribe them in order to pay your way out of some sort of cruel and atrocious crime, leave out any pre-approved sacrificial offering. The list of pre-approved items are: a cat’s liver, a jar of molasses, cabbage, cabbage covered in molasses, a cat’s liver in a jar of molasses inside of a cabbage, .7% milk, a small statue or figurine of a deformed and purple pineapple, and a human heart. Also when donating, make sure to carve the proper sigils indicating the intended recipient. All offers are greatly appreciated, and as proud citizens of this great town, I feel that it is our responsibility to support those who support us. Who else would keep us safe? Remember to donate today!
Good news, listeners! It seems that our zombie situation has solved itself. All of them disappeared suddenly about 15 minutes ago, and all they left in their wake was an odd combination of pumpkin seeds, rotting flesh, and half-eaten vegan chimichangas. As we do not yet know what kind of tortillas were used, and whether or not they contained wheat or wheat by-products, citizens are advised to not eat the remains. But hey, at least they’re no longer zombies.
In other news, our new visitor, Phil, has vanished. If anyone has any information on where he could have gone, please keep it to yourself. You never know who is listening. There is also speculation that his appearance may be related to our zombie epidemic, or that the Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency is involved. Do not think about these suspicions. Do not even know about them. In fact, the zombies never existed. Everything was simply a mass hallucination. If you are still left with the feeling that anything you just imagined, especially involving zombies or StrexCorp, actually happened, please report to the City Council for reeducation. Zombies aren’t real.
Now to traffic. Roads aren’t real. Cars aren’t real. You aren’t real. There is nowhere you need to go. Slow down, son. Close your eyes. Nothing exists. Close… your… eyes…. And that has been traffic.
The special elite force from the Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency that did not defeat StrexCorp’s zombies because zombies do not exist came into town. The six of them went out to Big Rico’s with an important-looking and eerily familiar official from the Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency.
One was a smug-looking shorter man with a styled goatee and air of money about him, who kept smirking at our town’s most important citizen Marcus Vansten and flirting with anyone in the nearby vicinity. Next was a serious-looking blond man who somehow looked very patriotic and seemed to have a slight yet fond scowl whenever he looked towards the first man. On the other side of the flirtatious man, there was a brunette man in a sexy purple shirt who appeared to be doing a science of some sort. There was also a beautiful yet fearsome-looking redhead talking to a man who was doing a rather striking impersonation of a preening bird. Lastly, there was a large, muscular man with long, flowing blonde hair and carrying around a hamme… wait. I must be hearing this wrong. I- excuse me. One moment…
Let’s go to the weather…
I can’t believe it, listeners! It turns out that the muscular man with majestic golden hair is an old friend of mine, Thor. Why, I haven’t seen him since the old days, before you humans founded this lovely town. He seems to have matured from the rash, reckless god I remember from my childhood, but it is most definitely him. I am sooo happy he’s doing well.
I remember back in the day, when my Religion still had followers and believers from the native tribes, he and his little brother would come down to visit me and my twin, Kevin. We would drink all night and sleep all day, living out our glorious youth to the fullest. Ahh, the good old days.
And then, of course, StrexCorp had to get involved. I’m still not sure what happened to my brother, but… well, I’m sure he’s fine. He’s the powerful God of Daylight, after all, and it would take a lot of effort to crack his cheerful, happy personality. I am rather thankful that horrible company stayed out of this town though, and that we have our wonderful Secret Police and City Council to watch over us instead of that awful, awful corporation. But, it’s not the time to worry about that. Now is a happy time, full of memories of pleasant pasts.
And oh, do I have memories. Both from back a little under a millennia ago when we first met, and more recent times. The four of us would have such fun, dancing and drinking the nights away. Yes, I remember those times fondly. In fact, since he’s been in town, we’ve went out for a cup of coffee to catch up. He’s doing well, and plans on visiting Earth much more than he used to.
He even said he’d visit town every once in a while! He also has a scientist friend, Jane, who we think could get along splendidly with Carlos. All of his assistants have ran away, so it would be great if he had a science friend to help him out. Maybe she could visit with Thor and he and I could hang out as they did experiments and scientific things. Maybe we could even find Kevin, or get Loki to come along, just like in the old days.
See, there are some things you can only safely do with certain people, and being the immortal God of Night does come with some perks. Perhaps they‘d like to hunt the haunted lost souls in the void, that was always something fun we’d used to do. And there is also nothing as satisfying as a nice old cup of Asgardian Mead.
But, as I’m sure you are aware, this is a news show, not a Cecil’s history show. So, I suppose I must return to the news. I am a professional, after all.
And now a paid interview with our most valuable sponsor, Marcus Vansten. So, Mr. Vansten, is there anything in particular you wish to talk about?
“No, I’m just here to remind you petty people how mind-blowingly rich I am. I have a lot of money. I mean, I can pay you to have this interview. I could pay you to have this interview last the rest of your shift, then extend it into the next program, and no one could say anything about it. I’m just that rich.”
Indeed you are. Thank you for that, Mr. Vansten. You are such a valuable member of our community.
“Yeah, I’m the most valuable guy in town. Do you know how much money I have? Probably not. Yeah, it’s so much you couldn’t even imagine it.”
Amazing. Yes, you have quite a bit, I can’t possibly imag- “Like A LOT. I mean, is it that hard to figure it out? To accept that I’m unbelievably wealthy? I’m the richest, most important guy in town! Everyone should know this!”
Yes, it is rather common knowledg- “And since I am so unbelievably rich, everyone has to love and respect me! It’s just how it works! And I am the richest guy in town! Like duh!”
Mr. Vansten, are you alri- “But nooooo! That Stark bastard, with his designer clothes and perfectly chiseled facial features, had to come here and mock me! MOCK me! All ‘Marcus Vansten? No, never heard of ya,’ and ‘Is that so? Yeah, don’t really care.’ Please, as if! Everyone’s heard of me! Who the hell does this ‘Tony Stark’ think he is?! Damn what a bastard! I have money, who gave you the right to mock me after I so graciously gave you the privilege of breathing the same air as me! Rot in Hell, Stark! Rot. In. Hell.”
*faint sound of a door slamming in the distance*
...why thank you for that interesting interview, Mr. Vansten.
Um... back to the news. The Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency Special Task Force, which apparently includes a certain ‘Tony Stark,’ is heading to the Abandoned Missile Silo. And… oh my. It- it appeared that Carlos, my dear, beloved Carlos, is with them. I can only pray to the Eternal And Unknowable Gods that they can keep him safe while I, trapped here by obligation, can only watch. I know Thor to be a good man, but I cannot in any way attest to the goodness of the rest of them. Let us hope that our wonderful scientist will come out safe and whole. And I hope whatever science they bribed him with is worth it.
Old Woman Josie called in today. The Angels have recently taken up militant gymnastics, and Old Woman Josie would very much appreciate it if a professional could teach them how it’s properly done, as their form is very off and she is no longer limber enough to teach it convincingly herself.
Apparently they’re making a mess of themselves, and while doing exercise is great, someone needs to help convince them it’s an outdoor sport. Twice already she’s burnt her corn muffins while trying to keep them in line. If you can help, please contact Old Woman Josie, out near the car lot. Any advice would be appreciated.
Ah… nevermind, listeners. The City Council and the Sheriff’s Secret Police would like to remind everyone that The Angels do not exist. Why do people keep forgetting that? Like, it’s been mentioned sooo many times, so like, everyone totally should get it by now. There is no reason Old Woman Josie would need help.
If you still wish to give unnecessary advice about imaginary problems, feel free to contact Old Woman Josie. The law won’t stop you… but it will be watching. Waiting. And soon enough, you’ll make a mistake. When it happens, We will notice. We know all. There will be no escape from Us. The law is eternal. No escape from It. No escape from Us. No escape. No escape. No. Escape.
Good news, listeners! Our perfect, cherished scientist Carlos has returned from the Abandoned Missile Silo unharmed. Apparently all that happened was he was given a few samples of a mysterious nature from someone important in the elite force of the Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency. We don’t know why they chose to do this, but don’t worry. I’ll keep an eye on my dear Carlos to make sure he doesn’t get hurt because of it.
The special elite force seems to have left after their short visit. They vanished without a word or explanation, going off into the uncertain night. I do hope they come back to visit sometime, or at least that Thor does.
But, in their absence, it leads us to wonder just why they came. What in this little town would draw such strong, powerful agents? Why did they bother? Is our existence truly worth their worry? I myself know that there is at least one person in our midst worth protecting from whatever evils may surround us, and I hope that you all do, too.
I hope you have someone important to curl up on the couch with, enjoying a cup of tea. Someone important to brave the dark of the void to visit. Someone important to love.
Good night, Night Vale, good night.