Of the locomotive breath
Runs the all-time loser
Headlong to his death
Oh, he feels the pistons scraping
Steam breaking on his brow
Old Charlie stole the handle
And the train, it won't stop going
No way to slow down"In The Shuffling Madness is a Blog horror story, written by Foolamancer, that takes place within The Fear Mythos. It follows the story of Archibald Donald Sullivan, Junior, a bitter and acerbic old man who adopts the pen name "Locomotive Breath" and starts uploading files from his collection of stories about the mythos in order to better prepare others who might run across the same beings.That doesn't last long.But Locomotive Breath's actions have drawn the attention of the Fears. Aqualung is stalking him, devouring his archives and stealing his memories. The Cold Boy has left his mark. EAT has taken a personal interest. And something is leaving cryptic messages about The Archangel scratched onto the back sides of mirrors...
— "Locomotive Breath", Jethro Tull
Tropes for In The Shuffling Madness
- Arc Words: "And in the Garden the Archangel, sword above his head" and "Hear the silence howling".
- Ax-Crazy: Christie shows signs of this, particularly when interrogating Thaddeus.
- Bigger Bad: Aqualung is this to the rest of the Fears.
- Cool Old Guy: LB had this title bestowed upon him by whitelight.
- Determined Defeatist: Locomotive Breath.
- Did We Just Have Tea with Cthulhu?: LB has now spoken directly to EAT twice.
- Fling a Light into the Future: One of Locomotive Breath's motives for starting up his archive.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: Thaddeus claims to be suffering from the aftereffects of this.
- Humanoid Abomination: Aqualung.
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Employed by Christie against Thaddeus.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: Aqualung's M.O.
- Meaningful Name: "Locomotive Breath". He took the name of that particular Jethro Tull song for a reason. According to EAT, the name is more important than he realized.
- Omnicidal Maniac: Whether or not it's conscious enough to qualify as a maniac is anyone's guess, but Aqualung is the embodiment of absolute nothingness. Its only purpose is to destroy everything that exists so thoroughly that it never existed in the first place.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: "Archibald" is too close to "Archie", and "Mister Sullivan" is a little stuffy when you're Running with the guy.
- Rogue Drone: Locomotive Breath.
- Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior!: "And you will have to pardon my bluntness. When a man my age sees death approaching as relentlessly as mine is, they cease caring about the opinions of whiny, pretentious bitches..."
- Sour Supporter: LB himself.
- Tomato in the Mirror: LB is Indisen. Though what exactly this might mean is not yet clear, given what Indisen means in OH GOD THE RAPTURE IS BURNING, it can't be good.
- You Cannot Grasp the True Form: Thaddeus claims that the Fears' true nature is inherently incomprehensible to normal humans, and that metaphors like the "Grand Game" are entirely inadequate to explain them.