Foundation at Night Vale
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Every night the rabbits gather in secret and no one knows why, because whatever they do, we all forget it in the morning.

Welcome to Night Vale.

Hello, listeners.

Maybe you saw some new vans in town this morning. I personally saw three on my way to the community radio headquarters. I don't think they're the black government vans that are listening to our conversations and kidnapping the bad political dissidents for all our sakes, because they only come out at night. I mean, they are said to be the government's, but city hall has never confirmed or disproved that. Now, where was I? Ah yes, the vans. They are not those of the sheriff's secret police either, since they are completely invisible and immaterial, just like their occupants.

No, these new vans are of a new kind: they are entirely grey and have a symbol on the side. It's weird by the way, I've never seen it before. It' s two concentric circular shapes, cut in three points by three arrows pointing to the center. Do you recognize it, listeners? If you do, call the sheriff's secret police directly to tell them about it, or to report any information you so jealously guard. To do this, nothing could be simpler: get out of town, go into the desert, dig a hole a few centimetres deep, stick your head through it and clearly pronounce the words "ïa ïa, Ph'nglui mglw'nfah". You will then be put in contact with a qualified person. You may even earn points on your Alert Citizen card! As a reminder, at twenty points, you will no longer be obliged to obey stop signs for one year.

More information on these vans, probably very soon.

It's time for our chronicle: "Children’s Fun Fact Science Corner"!

Today we will discover the incredible properties of chalk. Chalk, as you know, is a white stone extracted from specialized stone quarries, far from our beloved city. Probably in another country. This stone is very crumbly and has many applications as you know: it allows to draw beautiful drawings on dark surfaces, it even seems that librarians use it to write, or it can be used instead of salt in salads (its culinary properties are no longer to be demonstrated).

But did you know that it also allows you to repel any form of threat against you? Think back to your demonology class in primary school, the worst abominations (and more generally, people with bad intentions) are scared away by non-euclidian motives. So all you have to do is draw a seven-pointed pentacle with chalk around an object you want to protect, and they will never be able to get in! That's how, almost ten years ago, our community was able to get rid of the bogeymen that were infesting our closets, by placing these glyphs around children's beds.

So grab your chalk, use all the colors you want, and have fun! Nothing and no one will be able to get through that barrier you've erected!
That was our chronicle: "Children’s Fun Fact Science Corner".

Listeners, this just in! I was able to personally attend a press conference of the city council, in the form of a post-it stuck on the recording table. I'll read it to you as it is written.

"Hello Cecil.

Those vans you mentioned in the first part of your program are not at all from the Night Vale police, nor are they part of a sudden and unexplained appearance by a planned monthly invocation.
They have gathered in front of the observatory, so citizens are advised to stay away from the area. In any case, the area has been cordoned off in accordance with regulations with corpses of bailiffs.

With kind regards,

Sincerely yours,

Cordially comma,

The city council of Night Vale"

God, they write really small on these post-its. Ah, there's a postscript.

"PS: There was no need to read the last lines out loud, it only concerned you. This postscript too. Cut it out. Stop. We can hear you reading it…"

Well, I'll stop here, the rest doesn't really seem important. The postscript continues on about ten lines with the same sentences. So you will have understood it dear listeners, please stay away from the area near the observatory, for your own safety. And if by misfortune you are trapped in this looping zone, then apply the 4 R method, the one you are reminded of every year on the Street Cleaning Day!

Run away by any means possible and don't look back!

And now the traffic.

A man, alone. He's driving. He's driving an old utility vehicle that's seen better days. The landscape scrolls by, but doesn't change. The desert, all the time, as long as he can remember.
It's so hot in the cabin that his face is wet, sweaty and clammy. Unless it's tears? He doesn't know. The slightly salty and tart taste he'll perceive when the drops touch his lips won't let him know. He reaches into the backseat to get a bottle of water. He drinks it and throws the empty bottle beside him.
It reaches the floor of the car, littered with rubbish, other bottles and food packets opened during the drive.
He can't take it anymore. He's going to crack. He's been driving for days, not stopping for a moment, not even slowing down. No cars on the horizon. And all around him, always this damn desert. Has it been weeks? A month? He loses his train of thought.
Finally, he cracks.
He brake abruptly, stops the car in the middle of the road and bursts into tears. The heavy sobs of a desperate person. It lasts a few minutes, maybe a quarter of an hour, in the middle of the road, in the desert.
He dries his tears. He is resigned. He restarts the car and turns back. He notices a sign a hundred metres away. The sign of the town he left so long ago:
Night Vale.

This was the traffic.

Listeners, I just got a call from one of our interns, Lucile. She got stuck inside the perimeter near the observatory and could not get out in time. Listening only to her courage and journalistic ethics, she decided to make a report on the situation. Hang in there, Lucile, the whole of Night Vale Community Radio salutes your sense of duty and sacrifice.

The vans stopped and parked right at the entrance to the clock tower, which is quite a feat due to its invisibility and constant teleportation. Out of the vans come men and women in arms, dressed in black, supervising researchers. They're scientists, we can be very clear about that. The proof: they wear white coats. Our scientific correspondent, Carlos (the handsome Carlos, with his magnificent hair) will be able to confirm this. They brought with them people in… orange? Are they convicts? Lucile doesn't elaborate on this. God, these outfits are in such bad taste.

The teams seem to be heading towards the multicoloured chalk barrier drawn on the ground surrounding the observatory by a seven-pointed pentacle.
Oh! Wait, the phone's ringing.

Cecil? Can you hear me?

Yes, all right, Lucile, where are y…

Shhh! Keep your voice down!

What's going on?

The armed men and women have positioned themselves all around the observatory and are beginning to patrol. I hid in one of the buildings next door, but I'm afraid they'll find me.

Lucile, stay calm. You have to continue your journalistic mission, it's the duty of every good community radio intern. What's going on with the scientists?

Well, the people in white coats have organized themselves into groups and are hiding out like me in nearby buildings. I feel like they know it's dangerous. On the other hand, the people in orange are always next to the seven-pointed chalk pentacle around the observatory. Hold on, I'm putting up the video so you can see. One of the scientists is giving instructions with a megaphone. It looks like they're trying to get through the chalk circle.

HOW? But they're insane! What about the protection this barrier offers us? They are COMPLETELY CRAZ…

SHUT UP CECIL! The armed men will spot me… No. No no no, no no, go aw…

Lucile? Lucile? Are you still there?

To Lucile's family and friends, we offer our condolences. She was an excellent intern and will be missed by the entire team.

More info about these vans and the observatory as soon as possible.

Here is now the personalized weekly municipal program just for you. And only for you.

On Monday, the postman will make a mistake and exchange your usual newspaper with the neighbour's duck. No, not a tabloid, but indeed his backyard duck. The city council asks you not to blame him, it could happen to anyone.

Tuesday won't happen. You'll fall asleep Monday night and wake up Wednesday morning. But your friends, family and colleagues will assure you that they have met you on that day.

On Wednesday, the Old Faceless Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home will drop on the floor a key you've never seen before in your life. Keep it safe, who knows what it will open? The Old Faceless Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home will hold a press conference later to explain the reasons for her action.

Thursday will be fine. Don't worry about a thing. Everything's going to be all right. You have nothing to worry about. Especially not an invasion of oversized, overgrown cockroaches in your cellar. Not at all.

On Friday, you will have a big philosophical conversation with your cat that will reveal the meaning of life. I guess so. Maybe it will. I mean, I don't know, it depends on your cat. Do you know him that well? Who is he, that he can hog all your chairs and food like that? Besides, how long have you had a cat?

Saturday it's the return of the books to the library. Don't forget to return your last loan, War and Peace. Good luck. You'll need it.

On Sunday, you… Oh no. I… I can't say that… No, really… I'm sorry. My sincerest condolences. Courage.

Something new about the vans, listeners.

I just realized that Lucile's GSM cell phone camera is still working. It's a little… hard to… see what's going on. In any case, the orange convicts have failed to get past the seven-pointed chalk pentacle. It's as if they hit an invisible wall. Thank you to the city council for renewing this protection regularly, even though we no longer really know what's behind it.
Oh no… What are they doing? One of them, at the instigation of one of the scientists, approaches with a sponge. He's going to… Erase the trail with water? Oh no!

Listeners! I urge you to go and hide as soon as possible in your basement or your regulation bunker. Or, if you don't have one, under your table. And if you don't have a table either, our condolences to your family and friends. These unconscious people are about to release an unknown entity, perhaps demonic, probably tentacular and most certainly deadly! Please hurry. Flee! Abandon your family, your friends, leave everything behind! Myself, I'm in the fetal position under the recording table, microphone in hand, trembling. I'll stay at the station, to accompany you. As always.

So it is with this total terror in my gut that I bring you, for the last time, listeners… to the weather.

Listeners? Are you there?

As usual, a lot happened during the weather. Reports from listeners and the sheriff's secret police keep coming in to explain what happened. Here is a summary. No sooner was the seven-pointed pentacle cut by the sponge than a howl was heard throughout the city, and an earthquake was felt. And that's when we understood why this barrier existed.

The astrologers were released. They were crawling, helped by their shapeless pseudopodes, trying to get through the breach created by these unconscious people! The city trembled, holding its breath. The tentacular swarming mass pressed against the barrier, catching some strangers, taking them to its observatory to do what no one knows.
All seemed lost.

The ground was trembling more and more, the vibrations were felt throughout the city. More and more pseudopods were passing by. Until one of the scientists (probably because he had listened to our program) understood what he had to do. Faced with the imminent and inevitable destruction of the city, and probably the entire known world, he took a piece of chalk to fill the opening created in the seven-pointed pentacle on the ground. The armed men and women tried by all means to repel them, or fled, as any sensible person would have done. The scientist managed to draw approximately a chalk line on the ground, closing the breach. This sliced through one of the tentacles that had come out, crushing it under its own weight. He died instantly.

Immediately, the earthquakes ceased, as did the screams. The astrologers returned to their observatory, leaving behind some traces of mucus, like a wave, but nevertheless persistent, a promise of return.
The survivors of this incursion gathered their dead and wounded, taking them in their grey vans with their still unidentified logo. And they left, vanishing along the Route 800, leaving absolutely no trace of their passage, except the same wave, but nevertheless persistent promise of return.

All right. The lockdown's up. Bailiffs' bodies are off the posts, and the blood's cleaned up. Night Vale Citizens, you're alive, we're alive. That's all that matters. There's no need for further questioning. That a pseudo-government agency tried to kill us all by unleashing unimaginable horror should have no bearing on how we live or perceive the outside world. Let's be happy, we should be happy. Alive. Until next time.

Stay tuned for two hours of hair dryer noises, accompanied by a dull vibration of unknown origin, but curiously soothing.

Good night, Night Vale.

Good night.

Foundation at Night Vale is the translation of Fondation à Valnuit, a fanfiction of Welcome to Night Vale, a Night Vale Presents production. The original podcast is written by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor.
The generic is from Disparition. It can be downloaded at
The weather for this episode was a remix of Moriarty's "Jimmy" by Joachim Pastor & Romain Dalman. You can find more information on
Go to for more information about the podcast, to make a donation or to buy lots of cool stuff related to the show.

Proverb of the day: Eat five fruits and vegetables a day. At the same time. Do it quickly. Don't ask why. It's for your own safety.

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