Giannis Antetokounmpo 16 Points/3 Blocks Full Highlights (12/29/2014)

Time seemed to flow differently in this place. The alien landscape, while initially captivating due to its grotesque novelty, was easy to ignore; the cloudy, violet sky and brown, rocky ground did not vary. There was nothing that could be construed as a threat or even an object of interest. Giannis found his focus turned inwards on itself, inspecting and observing not the outer reality, but the inner reality.

With each passing moment, the memories of “Bradley Center Bratwurst Barbarity” became more and more like artifacts of a distant past to which he was only loosely tethered. Jabari Parker, Ersan Ilyasova, these names seemed more like names out of a history book than the names of people he had, only an hour ago, considered among his closest friends. It occurred to him that the stomach pain he had suffered from after consuming ten uncooked bratwurst sausages, the pain that only grew more intense after attempting to run around the Bradley Center ten times, had completely vanished. The distended feeling of his stomach had also disappeared, and he felt no urge to use the bathroom – none at all.

His feet walked of their own accord, following blindly the becloaked being that led their wordless journey to the distant mountain. A second would pass, and a boulder that had been far ahead would be far behind. Then, ten seconds would pass, and he had not even taken a step. Again, the passing of time in this dimension was not equivalent to the passing of time in others. Giannis was not perturbed by this temporal fluctuation.

He held up his hands in front of his face, seeing the long fingers stretched out to their fullest extent. Clapping them together, Giannis could feel the nerves sending signals to his brain, but his brain only registered those signals in a vague, uninterested sort of way. The physical embodiment of Giannis’ consciousness had ceased to be important, at least for the time being.

This revelation brought with it a few questions. He had definitely felt physical sensations when he had gone sailing through the dimensional portal, but those could have been fabricated; was this all some kind of elaborate “dream sequence”, for lack of a better term? Was he still, in fact, passed out in a snowbank outside the Milwaukee Bucks arena, surrounded by concerned teammates? It did seem to be a possibility, given the absurdity of the whole situation, but who was to say it wasn’t real if what he was experiencing mimicked every facet of a “real” reality?

They were making steady progress; the peaks in the distance grew closer, but there was still a long way to go on their journey. Giannis, still focused on his inner self, could feel the faint approaches of a foreign influence on his thoughts. It was an odd feeling, but not unpleasant, as this influence rearranged the neurons in his brain to create new memories. Was this the work of the entity in front of him? If it was, the being made no indication.

Giannis located these new memories and investigated them. They were more like still images than full scenes: a temple atop a rocky plateau; a circle of sentinel stones aflame in the darkness; the constellation Taurus viewed from a different vantage point than Earth’s; a black mask-like face that could belong to a god. These visions didn’t make sense to Giannis at the moment, but an emotion had also been planted in his brain, and the emotion told him that these images were to be kept close, as they contained secrets that would be invaluable in the course of his quest.

In the physical(?) world, the two companions, one human and one nonhuman, made their way to the mountain.

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