Mapping beyond the pale

Due to the difficulty involved in navigating the beyond, most attempts at cartography have failed. However, the following areas should be included on all maps charting the territory beyond the pale. The exact location of each region varies depending on one’s cognitive map.  

Known Territories

THE CROSSROADS include rural highways bordering the pale, sea of crisis, cliffs of ash.

DESPERATE GROUND is comprised of cliffs of precipitous heights, barren wastelands, field of alien debris and roaming nanobots, battlefield (all heroes enter here) catacombs of unkempt mines (ancient creatures patrol these depths. Spirits dwell in the infinite shadows which may include oubliettes. It is best to avoid whistling here).

ENTANGLING GROUND holds labyrinths, ravines, garden, forest of moving trees, plains of melancholy fog, areas of high seepage and psychic assault.


SACRED GROUND includes graveyard for all good pets and saints, the high tower, woods of sacred trees.


DEVASTATING GROUND is comprised of the end of the world.

ENCHANTING GROUND covers the meadow, the orchard, the haunted wood, field of windmills that play music, dreamworld. 

NEUTRAL GROUND holds caves, abandoned city at the end of time (evidence confirms existence of orphanage and junkyard), field of windmills that do not play music, unhaunted woods.

Frequently Encountered Beyond the Pale

All beings encountered beyond the safety of the pale should be approached with extreme caution.

archetypes. Figures who arise spontaneously in the mind, especially at times of crisis.  See also, crone, madman, collective unconscious, magician.

ball lightning. Luminous sphere that seems to appear out of nowhere and vanish into thin air.

broken frightened men. Usually heroes driven mad from lack of anyone to rescue, their demented attempts to drag wanderers back to the pale leave them and their captives stranded within labyrinths or buried in yard waste.

bystander exposure. Liability of members of the general public to come in contact with substances arising from operations or processes carried out by other individuals in their vicinity.

crone. Woman no longer able to bear children, she represents a life lived beyond the crutch of hoping, wishing, and dreaming. Especially drawn to the clown and hero, she will tell secrets no one should ever know.

dirty bomb. Weapons made of explosives, dynamite, and radioactive powder of pellets. Used by madmen within and beyond pale for unknown reasons.

doppelganger. An double, an almost identical replica of a person. If the person is good, then the doppelganger will be evil and vice versa.  If the two should meet within the pale, they will both perish.

downed live wires. A sure indication that one has ventured unknowingly beyond the pale.
dreams, ubiquity of

doppelganger. An double, an almost identical replica of a person. If the person is good, then the doppelganger will be evil and vice versa.  If the two should meet within the pale, they will both perish.
dream boy. Handsome boy runs around countryside still broke and still dreaming of one day hitting the lottery; he is easily identified by butterflies that follow him. Hero may try to adopt dream boy, but usually tires of dream boy’s unresponsive attitude. Scapegoat is more likely to bond with dream boy and then abandon him.  Dream boy will not notice clown's jokes. If a lost child falls for dream boy, the results could be devastating. See also, Love, unrequited.

dream boy’s doppelganger:  The maddening double of dream boy known to exacerbate unrequited love when encountered immediately after dream boy.

found objects.Those who frequently leave the psychological pale are likely to find 22 caliber bullets, bird bones, marbles, single domino 5-9 known as The Trial (indicates imminent death), rock towers, secret notes, boomerangs. See also Yard Waste.

graves of all good pets and saints. Sacred burial grounds for pets, wild gentle animals, and saints.

harmful substance. Substance that, following contact with an organism can cause ill health or adverse effects either at the time of exposure or later in the life of the present and future generations.

individual protective device. Obtaining a weapon is crucial upon leaving the pale. Threat include being thrown in dungeon or drain, or being whipped by vagrants. Potential devices include slings, staff slings, half a brick, old parking meters, bones, tinfoil, trebuchet, poison, picks for carving spyholes in walls (especially those of labyrinths), grappling hooks, bamboo pipes to use as snorkels, flying blenders, flares, spears, atom bombs, shields. In the absence of such obvious weapons, a stick or piece of yard waste should be easy to obtain.

labyrinths. Circular mazes that  offer the curious a means to become lost, and then find oneself again. If forced to enter a labyrinth beyond the pale, one should expect to find danger behind every twist and turn. They offer excellent protection from dust devils.

lost souls, sorrow of.  Lonely outsiders wishing only to belong, they are experts at seduction and understanding until they return to tortured states of isolation in the melancholy abandoned town near the end of the world.  Typically women, they have been known to offer food in exchange for comfort. The fact dogs are attracted to these lost souls indicates that they may be scapegoats. They occasionally wander the rural highways bordering the pale, hoping to find what will make them feel complete (See also: Dream boy, Dream boy's doppelganger).
madman. A wanderer who cannot maintain balance, nor can he perceive a difference between physical and spiritual realities.  Lacks ability to distinguish between pale and beyond (See also, Archetypal Figures, Other Lost Children).

mermaids. Creatures half fish and half woman who should be avoided as they lure heroes, scapegoats, and clowns to their deaths, bring and provoke misfortunes and avidly seek human lives, either drowning travelers or devouring them.  They are said to be born without souls.  Rich inner fantasy world of a lost child acts as protective device against mermaids, but a lost child is likely to run into siblings who have ventured beyond the pale to rescue her when mermaids are present.

monsters, raft of. Often encountered amid the Sea of Crisis, these forbidding beings attract heroes armed with individual protective devices. If a traveler has the unfortunate experience of falling into the Sea of Crisis, he should attempt to cling to the raft until a hero can rescue him. If more were known about them they would be called “animals” not “monsters”. Some argue that these beings are actually lost souls who were banished from the pale because their characteristics fail to conform to the rigid minds of modern-day cryptozoologists (See also: creature of nightmare).

nanobots and alien debris. Once friendly robots who were banished from the pale by the scientists who created them, nanobots self-replicate in the barren wastelands, spending their days covered in sticky gray goo and concerned only with ecophagy (uncontrolled self-replication), building copies of themselves out of whatever is available. They are confined to the barren wastelands beyond the pale by Macroscale winds that keep them from spreading into other areas beyond the pale. The may be connected to alien debris floating in the Sea of Crisis.

nightmares, doom of. No being should sleep in the areas of high seepage beyond the pale, for nightmares result. Such dreams include being pursued, feeling stuck in slow motion and unable to move, losing handfuls of teeth, or experiencing scenes of falling or drowning.  Lost children naturally gravitate towards regions populated by animals, so they are likely to never encounter areas of high seepage and psychic attack because animals are smart enough to avoid those places.

ninjas, treachery of. Threatening warriors who practice ninijitsu, the art of making themselves invisible by walking on their hands, hanging motionless from tree branches or yard waste, and swimming underwater. Ninjas either alone or traveling in treacheries drill holes in walls in order to spy.

orphans, abandonment of. Usually small children whose parents traveled with them beyond the pale for demented reasons before leaving them there. They are known to use whatever means possible to attract attention, hoping to be reunited with their families and should be avoided because their hullabaloo attracts nefarious characters.

outcasts, creep of. Banished from the pale for some real or imagined crime, these loners are destined to wander. Curiously, these poor souls who find themselves beyond the pale may search for a path leading back to the pale and spend their time building transportation devices from yard waste. Typically those who arrive beyond the pale are likely to not want to return to the pale, as confounding variables that determine one’s leaving of the pale emerge from physical circumstance and psychological craving.  Rarely does one find herself trapped beyond the pale, frantically realizing her efforts to return have been thwarted by labyrinths, yard waste, and the like. In most cases, when one physically leaves the pale, he or she has subconsciously been longing to venture beyond, and when one is beyond the pale, if he or she decides to return to the pale, the path appears (See also: scapegoat and boomeranging). 

In some instances, highly catastrophic scenarios including shipwrecks, hostage situations, or inadvertent misuse of drugs that deprave may propel a person, animal, or object beyond the pale when no subconscious or conscious desire directs the individual to roam there.

Those outcasts trapped beyond the pale may be lucky enough to encounter a hero, who will gladly transport them to the pale. Those less fortunate outcasts creep around the beyond alone and or in small clusters and often become madmen or in some cases conceal themselves in yard waste permanently.

prophet of doom.  This anomaly is most frequently encountered inside the physical boundaries of the pale but is so obsessed with his dystopian fantasies that he is obviously psychologically beyond the pale. This negative soothsayer may actually have traveled to The End of the World beyond the pale, but because he owes his disarray to the fact that he has stared into the apocalypse, his warnings will be dismissed as hullaballoo by fans of the pale.

ravines. Aside from presenting the obvious threat of a fall to one’s death, ravines provide excellent places to hide from sneaks of weasels, ninjas, madmen, and heroes. These holes exist more often beyond the pale than within the pale since those roaming beyond the pale don’t bother filling them up.

rural highway. A special type of lonely country road that is visible both from the pale and from beyond the pale. People like to hitch-hike along these roads despite stories of escaped mental patients living in boarded up houses, abnormally large snakes, and mutants caused by chemical spills. Escape velocity may motivate one to drive along this road with neither a spare tire nor cellular phone. Both scapegoats and lost children leave the pale via these roads, and heroes have been known to patrol them in domestic pick-up trucks.

sacred trees.  Gnarled old trees known to carry out miracles and possess omnipotent powers. They grow near graves of saints and pets buried beyond the pale. Clothing may be tied to tree to transfer problems or to absorb saint like powers after taking vows.  Those who sleep under sacred trees are never disturbed by madmen or sneaks of weasels, although only lost children display a tendency to rest beneath or in their branches.

shadows, wickedness of. Typically harmless although frightening, they inhabit oubliettes deep in the catacombs on desperate ground and flicker in the peripheral vision of anyone who whistles. Because scapegoats often travel with dogs, they are the most likely to attract wicked shadows, and the easily injured scapegoats take the terrible forms more seriously than they probably should.

somnambulists.  Zombie-like sleepwalkers who only leave the pale while dreaming; great care should be taken not to wake them, lest their spirits become trapped beyond the pale without their bodies. If this occurs, the poor souls' bodies are usually shunned by inhabitants of the pale until they develop bedsores.

soul-mates, fascination of. Two characters engaged in a love affair fated to end tragically for one or both due to the disapproval of society, friends, family, or some tragic situation.

wise old man. A kind yet stern fellow, he knows each region beyond the pale and appears when wanderers find themselves in hopeless desperate situations and can only be extricated from profound reflection or luck. He usually directs clowns and scapegoats back to the pale and teaches heroes how to fashion weapons from yard waste. Since lost children rarely feel this desperate, they seldom encounter the wise old man. Ironically, it is the wise old man who advises the rabbits about matters pertaining to more threatening creatures.

yard waste. A most perplexing collection of oddities, yard waste has been known to exist both within and beyond the pale.  Such detailed attention has been devoted to the study of yard waste that the subject demanded its own chapter.

neighbors with bizarre injuries. When one leaves the pale inadvertently, at first glance everything may appear normal. Whiplash, decapitation, amputation amongst neighbors is one of the most common indications that one has left the pale.

neighbors with bizarre injuries. When one leaves the pale inadvertently, at first glance everything may appear normal. Whiplash, decapitation, amputation amongst neighbors is one of the most common indications that one has left the pale.