So now, after all this Marble Hornets Entry #27 and White Elephants and Core Theory Community (go ahead and complain about the name, Zero, but unless you give me a better name for the community, I’m sticking with it) stuff, we’re getting back to the classics. Here, I’m mentioning a blog that I don’t think I’ve covered yet: Just Another Fool.
Just Another Fool is (besides evidently being the only blog besides mine that’s on WordPress instead of Blogspot or Tumblr) really the father of all the Slenderblogs out there. Yes, even this one, technically, since I was pretty much jumping on the bandwagon of all the other blogs out there. And admit it, you all were too.
Anyway, on to what the blog is actually about. Logan Renault’s friend Matt went to serve in Iraq. Logan, as a present, gave him a moleskin notebook. Matt didn’t use the notebook (his handwriting isn’t that great, and the sheets weren’t lined sheets). Not, at least, until he came back, suffering from a severe case of PTSD. In it, he started drawing a somewhat familiar spiderlike figure, who was evidently responsible for killing his squad. Matt dies, but not before insisting that the notebook be given to Logan. Logan then starts going through the journal, trying to figure out what it was Matt was trying to convey.
Eventually, however, Logan goes crazy and runs off. His friend Josh replaces him as the author. However, after a few warnings from an insane Logan, Josh decides to ship the notebook off to someone else to examine it. Throughout this, Logan makes a few cryptic posts on the blog, including some pictures of himself evidently missing an eye. One is posted shortly very shortly before his death. Josh is called on to identify the body, saying he’ll be back to report on it in an hour or two. He never does. The blog ends there.
Some things this blog is notable for: a large number of actual game-jacking trolls (as opposed to those in-game trolls that the Core Theory Community has), a depiction of the Slender Man with a neat hat, the introduction of notebooks, and the associations with trees. It’s this last one that I want to talk about.
Before I talk about the trees, though, a few theories about it. One theory that’s grown out of this (largely due to who may have been a game-jacking commenter) is that Matt never actually encountered the Slender Man, and that everything he put down was secondhand knowledge. There is actually some credence to this theory, as it explains a few inconstancies. For example, why his first drawing of Slendy has a hat (the only time he’s ever depicted with one), or why he’s depicted in his less popular “spider” incarnation. The theory goes that he couldn’t cope with the death of his team, and consequently attempted to use what another soldier had told him of the Slender Man to cope. However, even those who believe this theory agree that it’s definitely the Slender Man who’s coming after Logan, and who probably ultimately killed Matt (after all, you can’t really strangle yourself to death with your own hands).
And now, back to the trees. This blog is probably the one that first gave people the impression that the Slender Man is a tree. That’s actually never really hinted at in Just Another Fool, actually. In it, he’s heavily associated with trees, but he’s never really hinted at being a tree himself. One thing that comes up is a cryptic comment or two mentioning “Yggdrasil,” the World Tree, implying that the Slender Man is somehow related to it. However, assuming that he is a tree because of that is, in my opinion, a bit of a stretch.
So what, exactly, is Yggdrasil/The World Tree? Well, it’s a tree that connects all living things. It’s related to many different mythologies, but the tree is fairly similar in all of them. Yggdrasil (an ash tree) is the Norse name, the Tree of Life is the Christian tradition equivalent, and the Ashvastha comes from Hindu tradition. When I say it connects all living things, I do mean all people on earth, but it seems to connect other worlds as well. Yggdrasil was said to connect nine worlds. More commonly, it connects the earth, the heavens, and the underworld.
In other words, it’s connected to all realms. Our realm. The afterlife. The realm of the Slender Man. You can maybe see where I’m going with this.
I’m going to explain my theory, now. This is a theory I’ve had for a bit now, after reading up on the Core Theory. I know that, by this point, most people are starting to move away from it, but I think that there’s definitely some good potential in there. If he was created out of our legends/myths/faerie tales, those are the things that will put him down as well. I think that a modification of the Core Theory works, as long as you don’t start getting stupid and giving yourself magical powers or claiming that you can capture him/prank him/spit in his face without any negative repercussions. He’s not scary when you do that.
And now that I’ve gotten that justification/rant out of the way, on to my theory. One of the things that stood out to me about the Core Theory was Robert’s “Weapon.” He stated that it had to be a blade. Things suddenly made sense. Of course it did. It always has to be a blade. Think back to the legends you’ve heard (which, I remind you, the Core Theory is essentially trying to recreate), or even any faerie tale or fantasy story. It may have to do with them being set in a less advanced era, but the weapon that eventually vanquishes the beast is almost always a blade. The only possible other weapons would be an axe or a hammer. But a pocketknife coated in his substance? First of all, why would his own substance hurt you? That’s like saying that your own blood hurts you. On top of that, there’s nothing legendary about a pocketknife. If it’s a blade, it must be a sword.
So, what Weapons do we have as options? Well, my initial thought would be that, since the Slender Man is a demon of the Internet, it would take a legendary weapon of the Internet to defeat him. The only thing that really fits that description, as I mentioned in a comment earlier on my blog, is the Banhammer. As cool as the Banhammer is, though, it’s a forum joke. Even if we could somehow create a physical Banhammer, who would seriously believe that it could take Slendy down? After all, he is what we believe him to be. No, a different approach has to be taken. But what?
I was stumped until I remembered my extensive research on cheesy fantasy novels. If high fantasy has taught me anything, it’s that there is always a magical sword somewhere. The sword almost always contains some form of magical power and is obtained under valiant conditions. Also, naturally, how it works has to make some form of sense. For example, in The Sword of Shanarra, by Terry Brooks, the titular sword has the rather lame power of revealing truth to whoever comes in contact with it when it activates. However, since the antagonist has a bit of a problem admitting that he’s dead, well…you can see where this is going.
So, what would make sense within the Slender Man mythos, since we have a less-than-magical society to draw from? My first thought was “something from the ‘Other Side.’” A sword forged in whatever realm it is he comes from. For some reason, I kept picturing a wooden sword. I don’t know why. Why would I picture a wooden sword, of all things? Wood’s not particularly sharp. In fact, it tends to be a bit more blunt. It breaks easier than metal. It burns. So what would give me the asinine idea of making it out of wood?
Naturally, it’s because the Slender Man is associated with trees. But people agree that he likes trees. So why did my mind keep coming back to a wooden sword instead of a metal one? I thought a bit harder, and it hit me. Why would Yggdrasil be associated with the Slender Man when the World Tree is usually seen as a good thing? When people associate him with Yggdrasil, they usually assume that he is Yggdrasil or that he comes from Yggdrasil or Yggdrasil gives him power or something like that.
But what if Yggdrasil is not so helpful to him? All of a sudden, the details of my theory were a bit less ridiculous. Yggdrasil connects the worlds. Naturally, it has power over all of them. Perhaps smiting him with a sword carved from Yggdrasil would force him out of our reality and back to his own, possibly permanently. Perhaps Yggdrasil’s substance gives power over the realms to those who wield it. Or perhaps it’s something as simple as Yggdrasil’s existing in all realms that allows it to harm things from any realm. So a sword (or possibly even a sword hilt) carved from the wood of Yggdrasil. Preferably with an Operator Symbol carved into the pommel.
I personally think it’s a fairly solid theory, just because it makes sense. Heck, if you think I makes sense, believe it yourself. He’s shaped by belief, so if we think it’ll beat him, it’ll beat him. Problem solved.
Oh, wait. Anyone know where to find Yggdrasil?