I’m trying to figure out how to make a person forgettable.

Really, and truly forgettable. I know that may seem like the opposite of something that you’d want to do for a character you’re creating, but it is the crux of this one.

You see, we’ve got a guy who the entirety of creation has forgotten. Even Death has forgotten him, making him ageless and immortal.

I hear him in my head describing it to some one:

It is like trying to leave tracks in a blizzard. Every indention made in the snow, proof that you’d been there, is filled up and covered over. The universe is actively working to unmake any record of you.

But the horrible irony of that conversation is that they’ll just forget it the second he’s out of sight.

It is easy to just wave your hand and say something like “Everything has forgotten him”, but something completely different to give hard rules to something like that.

The situations and iterations are maddening

What if he writes something down and hands it to some one? Can they then remember what he’s written? If so, then that’s them remembering him, and therefor against the core of this idea.

So, solve that by saying that the writing fades once it is away from him, and then the memory fades from the person who read the writing. That works, but it then raises the question of if we’re not just talking memory here, but a physical record, a physical record that can be erased, what else could that affect?

If he beats a man to death, do that man’s injuries stitch themselves back together after the character wanders off?

I guess you could go that route, but any tension that could be built would be gossamer thin. You’ve got a guy who can’t die and who can’t actually make an impact on the world.

But what if he was helped in his actions? Like, say he saved a drowning child with the help of some one else. Sure, they’d both forget him, but what would happen if there hadn’t been anyone else to help him? Would that child spontaneously drown the second he walked away?

It gets awkward and convoluted very fast, you see.

The idea is very simple and I think has legs for days, but the minutia, the continuity shit, that’s where this falls apart.

Of course, the entire idea behind this character is the ret-conning in comic books. Some crazy force ret-cons an entire comic universe, but since they can’t remember our character, they rec-con everything but them. The character is the only person who remembers the previous world, but all record of them has been erased in this new one.

Wiping out a physical record that way and allowing a new one to be rebuilt is the easiest solution, but it just feels cheap in a way that I can’t put my finger on. Like I might be asking too much of what I need this character to do.

You’ve been reading the COMMONPLACE – where I talk shit that no one understands and’ll never see the light of day.