Jimmy is an Eldritch Monstrosity.

Jimmy has a Red Ball.

Jimmy wants someone to play with him and his Red Ball.

All of Jimmy's friends are busy trying to Overturn the Cosmic Order and bring Chaos to all of Existence.

Jimmy thinks that humans will play with him and his Red Ball.

Jimmy once tried to talk to a human via telepathy.

The human went mad and died.

Jimmy once tried to reveal his True Form to a human.

The human went mad and died.

Jimmy once wrote a note in his native tongue and passed it under the Desk of Eternity to a human.

The human read it, tried to use some of the words to open a Gateway to the Nether Realm, went mad and died.

Jimmy once opened a portal to push his red ball to a human.

The human was infested by an Alien Mushroom, killed his family, started a worldwide cult, mutated into a Writhing Mass of Tentacular Doom, slaughtered three dozen investigative reporters, went mad and died.

Jimmy was sad.

Can you help Jimmy?

Given that humans have a tendency to go mad or otherwise suffer grisly fates when exposed to beings from beyond reality, how could an eldritch horror interested in peaceful communications with humanity reliably do so?

As with many mythologies featuring such creatures exposure to an eldritch horror isn't an automatic guarantee of insanity, but prolonged exposure to them certainly increases the chances of having an existential crisis or being possessed by Something from Beyond. Assume that individuals have different levels of resistance and that the more direct the form of interaction the less it will take before Badness happens to the Mere Mortals.

Any method or methods that would reduce the incidence of people going mad and/or the risk of them causing harm to themselves or others will be considered. Organisations of humans or using technological solutions are allowed

I'll be ranking the answers based on how well they enable Jimmy to play games (nice ones, obviously) with his new human friends, and how few casualties they're likely to cause.

  • 53
    $\begingroup$ I don't suppose the red ball is actually a sentient sphere of blood screaming out with the voice of a thousand young? I don't think I want to play with Jimmy. $\endgroup$
    – Cort Ammon
    Mar 4, 2017 at 15:54
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    $\begingroup$ @CortAmmon Your desires matter not. Jimmy wants to play with you. $\endgroup$
    – Joe Bloggs
    Mar 4, 2017 at 16:04
  • 126
    $\begingroup$ Join some internet forums. The insanity will be hardly noticeable in the crowd and if Jimmy writes in his native tongue by accident, the only response will be "english plz" $\endgroup$
    – Cyrus
    Mar 5, 2017 at 8:58
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    $\begingroup$ "On the Internet, nobody knows you're an eldritch horror." $\endgroup$
    – scrwtp
    Mar 5, 2017 at 17:32
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    $\begingroup$ I have to say, this is probably the most fun question I have seen here $\endgroup$
    – Paul TIKI
    Mar 5, 2017 at 17:50

23 Answers 23


By computer

Clearly, humans can't handle direct contact with Jimmy, so what's needed is a layer of separation. Fortunately, humans have recently invented a way for two beings to have a form of interaction while being nowhere near each other. All Jimmy needs is a remote cabin in the woods, a laptop, and a satellite dish.

Now, putting Jimmy online is obviously risky business. For best results, Jimmy should abide by some strict ground rules:

  • Before jumping in: observe, observe, observe. Learn how humans interact and imitate it. Make it your goal to pass the Turing test.
  • Stay away from Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook. ("It's called Facebook, Jimmy, you can't join if you don't have a face...") Don't even think about getting a Skype or YouTube account. Textual communication only. Keep your default profile picture.
  • Limit yourself strictly to existing words from a human language, written in printable ASCII characters (and by all means, avoid the Z̪͙̞̟̖͖̖̈͋̒͆͊͠a̧͓̜͍͒ͣ̐ͮͣ̋l̀gͧ̂̎̅̅̆͂ő̤̈ ̧͓̳̘̭̦̖̫̾͑̋t̘̳̖e͔͉̗͆ͦ͋̓x̪ṭ͓͖̫̖̗ͧ̃).
  • It's best to look for one-to-one forms of communication: if when you slip up and say something in your native tongue (we all make mistakes), you've only driven one person insane, not 500.
  • Above all, never ask someone you met online to meet you in person. Ever.

This will probably still be a process of trial and error. But with luck and determination, Jimmy will get better at "speaking human" over time, until he can chat with someone and hardly raise any suspicion at all.

As to playing ball, that unfortunately falls afoul of the "no meeting in person" rule. However, it is possible that some kind of virtual ball game could be arranged.

@ghosts_in_the_code asked whether it has to be a simple 2D video game. Basically, yes. This is the only safe route. (More generally, the game has to be entirely created by humans, with little to no customization available.)

To the objection that this level of interaction will not give Jimmy happiness, I respond: A mere mortal such as myself cannot guess what will or will not give Jimmy happiness. However, the OP wants to know "how well [solutions] enable Jimmy to play games (nice ones, obviously) with his new human friends." If Jimmy wants to play with humans, and if accidentally infecting them with Alien Mushrooms makes him sad, then he's going to have to accept their limitations and take whatever level of interaction he can get. If text chat and playing Pong with a human isn't enough to make him happy, he might want to look for some other species to play with.

  • 50
    $\begingroup$ Someone else tried it and it did not go as expected $\endgroup$ Mar 5, 2017 at 9:05
  • 15
    $\begingroup$ @Memor-X No, you see, those images are clearly just what some artist thinks an eldritch abomination looks like. An actual image would clearly cause insanity. (Either that, or it might be safe because it's not the being's True Form. Or it might be somewhat safe--the OP implies there can be different degrees of danger with different methods.) $\endgroup$
    – DLosc
    Mar 6, 2017 at 5:36
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    $\begingroup$ @PavelJanicek That's exactly why we have the rule: No Facebook! $\endgroup$
    – DLosc
    Mar 6, 2017 at 5:37
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ "Keep your default profile picture." I dunno. This in itself is kind of weird. A picture of a red ball (obtained on Google, not a picture of his actual ball) should be fine. =) $\endgroup$
    – jpmc26
    Mar 6, 2017 at 9:56
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    $\begingroup$ @DLosc (re: artist's impression) Exactly what I was about to say. However, using an artist's impression instead of a real profile picture might again be a solution to that problem. (i.e. have Jimmy go through google images for an artist's impression of an Eldritch Horror that he likes and feels comfortable identifying with and use that as his FB picture). $\endgroup$
    – Jasper
    Mar 6, 2017 at 11:56

He could try playing with a young kid. Children, because they have not experienced as much as adults, often lack the same level of understanding of events that adults have. So they are much less likely to go mad and die simply because they don't really understand that this is an eldritch abomination.

I've also found that young children tend to enjoy playing, especially having dogs go fetch, so Jimmy could try to look sort of similar to a dog and that might help, too.

  • 7
    $\begingroup$ "Who's your friend who likes to play? Jimmy, Jimmy!" $\endgroup$
    – DLosc
    Mar 6, 2017 at 6:03
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @DLosc: Now I want to find that piece of music, slow it down by 20 bpm and put it in a minor key. I suspect the result will be nightmare fuel. $\endgroup$
    – Joe Bloggs
    Mar 6, 2017 at 7:07
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ So Jimmy is a not so imaginary friend. $\endgroup$
    – PyRulez
    Mar 6, 2017 at 14:14
  • 53
    $\begingroup$ @PyRulez More of an unimaginable friend, really $\endgroup$ Mar 7, 2017 at 2:18
  • 26
    $\begingroup$ My Unimaginable Friend - a tale on which a kid befriends a peaceful eldritch abomination - would be a really awesome book. $\endgroup$
    – Mermaker
    Mar 8, 2017 at 12:32

The key to peaceful communication lies in Creeping Normality. Jimmy likely has plenty of time to work on establishing the connection, as most Eldritch Abominations are quite long-lived, if not immortal.

Jimmy needs to make contact gradually, over generations. Choose a family that seems to be pretty hardy and with a bit of natural insanity, and make some very minor contact - just enough to make them comfortable with the idea of there being something more.

After a generation, when the children are now being raised with knowledge of there being something, now push just that little bit further, and perhaps expose them to a few relatively mundane words in Eldritch. Given the power of the Eldritch language, perhaps restrict it to something that will have some minor effect, but nothing literally mind-blowing. Maybe a word that causes the lights in the area to dim slightly as it's said.

The next generation might then experience the first telepathic contact. Just a moment's contact, not enough for them to be driven mad, just that flash of contact enough to give a seed of questioning of reality. By this point, the family is probably going to become a lot more insular as neighbours are probably going to think them mad.

By this point, you've probably got something not unlike the Addams Family - they're all a bit twisted in the head, and the Eldritch touch has probably also warped them a little, physically.

In a few more generations, after having given a few more words and exposed them to just a little more basic contact, it's time to make things just a little more personal. Telepathic communication while they sleep. This is the test for suitability - Jimmy should be able to test their minds during sleep for whether they'll be able to handle more. So Jimmy appears in their dream via telepathy, just forming a presence. Those who are unsuitable will rapidly develop insomnia, and Jimmy can either pull back and leave them be, or just have a little Eldritch fun with them, depending on whether he's feeling malevolent at the time.

Those who don't develop insomnia are the ones to keep an eye on. These are the ones that are hardy enough in mind to potentially accept further contact.

By this point, they should have enough Eldritch to be capable of the most elementary of communication. Jimmy should start teaching a few more Eldritch words within their dreams. Make sure not to choose powerful words that might be usable to create portals, etc - they're not ready for that.

A few more generations in, and Jimmy should be up to the point of always being present in their dreams from a young age. They are probably also physically warped enough that local villagers think of them as monsters, and just mad enough to be worthy of the word, without being truly insane.

Once this has been achieved, Jimmy can get a little more forceful - apparitions, momentary glimpses into Eldritch Space, even perhaps a few words capable of opening a flimsy portal (just enough that they can get glimpses at will and perhaps be slightly exposed to Nether Realm, without getting close to making a proper gateway).

It's at this point that education becomes critical - they're ready to learn of the dangers of the portals and how to defend themselves using Eldritch words and techniques.

After a couple more generations, they should be ready. It's time for Jimmy to reveal some of his true form. A few will probably go mad and kill themselves, anyway, but the hardier ones should withstand the big reveal. These are the ones that Jimmy will be able to start playing with... albeit only slightly. A few more generations, and Jimmy will have a family of near-human beings that have just enough Eldritch in them to play ball with.

  • 9
    $\begingroup$ While it may work, seems more trouble that it's worth for just a ball game... By the time he's done he might find messing with mortals' minds a better hobby than sports ;) $\endgroup$ Mar 7, 2017 at 16:47
  • 8
    $\begingroup$ @jpangamarca - sounds like a win either way for Jimmy. $\endgroup$
    – Glen O
    Mar 8, 2017 at 1:22
  • $\begingroup$ But not for poor humans ;) $\endgroup$ Mar 8, 2017 at 1:58
  • $\begingroup$ I like this idea the best so far! $\endgroup$
    – Yuriy S
    Mar 13, 2017 at 17:28
  • 6
    $\begingroup$ Best to avoid inbreeding, so you might as well pick a whole town. ...perhaps a nice coastal village. ...maybe somewhere in Massachusetts? $\endgroup$ Aug 17, 2017 at 20:46

Jimmy should stop communicating with normal (sane) humans and focus his attention to those who are already considered insane by the society. He should contact one such insane person through telepathy and invite him to play with him. The insanity of his human friend would keep him from the dangers of horror which Jimmy emanates and one day, someone insane enough will respond to him and agree to play with him :)

  • 16
    $\begingroup$ The onky problem is that the insane person might see Jimmy as an ugly poodle and repatedly shoot Jimmy with a shotgun and then try to explode him with C4. Ever heard of Old Man Henderson, the only guy who won The Call of Cthulhu? $\endgroup$ Mar 4, 2017 at 18:45
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ A single package of C4 should be nothing to worry for Jimmy, and he might not even notice the shotgun shots. $\endgroup$ Mar 4, 2017 at 23:15
  • 33
    $\begingroup$ The experience of insane persons of the world is often exactly like that of a horror story. They are living in Hell already, meeting Jimmy won't help. They aren't likely to play with the Red Ball. In fact, they are likely to die faster than sane people. The insane have more than enough health problems accompanying their psychological issues. This answer is based on a stereotypical and erroneous view of insanity. $\endgroup$
    – a4android
    Mar 5, 2017 at 1:45
  • 11
    $\begingroup$ @YoustayIgo That is disingenuous. Caretakers, friends, and family members are close enough to these people to speak authoritatively about the challenges they face. I personally find your answer somewhat funny, but in real life, mental illness really, really sucks. $\endgroup$
    – Pedro
    Mar 6, 2017 at 0:23
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ @YoustayIgo My understanding of how the insane perceive the world is based on discussions with clinical psychologist friends and accounts by the insane themselves (schizophrenia in particular). It is a common conceit that the insane will treat insane situations as if this is sane. I see the humour of it, but I know it's wrong. This isn't a reflection on yourself. Very few people know this about insanity. One of the joys of WB is learning things & having wrong ideas shot down in flames. $\endgroup$
    – a4android
    Mar 6, 2017 at 7:24

Jimmy creates a fountain of youth and immortality. Then Jimmy tells one of the humans about it. That human probably goes mad and dies, but not until he tells other humans. These humans try and seek out the fountain. When they drink from it, Jimmy gets to play with them forever. They'll go mad, but they will never die.

EDIT: Make sure to dispose of insane immortals in a black hole when you are done with them. Leaving them on the planet can spoil the whole thing.

  • 11
    $\begingroup$ As long as "mewling and drooling" is the ball game Jimmy wants to play, this answer works. $\endgroup$
    – SPavel
    Mar 5, 2017 at 1:22

Jimmy realised that it's really only the meaty parts of his playmates that tend to go rancid when he's around. If he could somehow separate the meaty parts from the other parts, everything would be alright!

Luckily his potential friends separate from their meaty parts quite easily. Blunt force, trauma, electric shock, flensing. They pop apart quite easily really. Once the meaty bits are separated Jimmy can bring out the red ball and play catch all day.

Jimmy hasn't quite figured out how to put his playmates back how he found them though, so when Mommy calls him to come home and feast on the corrupted dreams of heroes and prophets, he leaves behind a bit of a mess. Maybe tomorrow he can play the game where he tries to put one back together!

  • 7
    $\begingroup$ So, was 'how few casualties they cause' a secondary concern here?? O_O $\endgroup$
    – Joe Bloggs
    Mar 4, 2017 at 16:03
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ Better than going mad, killing your family, starting a worldwide murder cult :-p given the limitations I think I actually did quite well. $\endgroup$
    – jorfus
    Mar 4, 2017 at 16:19
  • 20
    $\begingroup$ Good point! Playing football with a skeleton is going to result in fewer casualties than accidentally starting a murder-cult! $\endgroup$
    – Joe Bloggs
    Mar 4, 2017 at 16:22

Jimmy should play with the scientist who just invented a tool to erase recent memories (we'll call him Fred.) Fred is so horrified by playing with Jimmy that he cannot help but erase his memory of the day.

The trick is to make sure that Fred doesn't realize how long he's been playing; if he thought he'd already erased his memory of these unspeakable horrors thousands of times, he might decide to stop playing altogether. This means Jimmy has to do a bit of work to keep Fred's environment in order, so as each day starts, nothing is apparently wrong. Jimmy will probably get bored of this eventually, leaving Fred to discover the true depths of his nightmare, but I'm sure by that point there will be a New Toy to play with.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ I’d like to read that story! $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Mar 6, 2017 at 4:53
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ @JDługosz, I can imagine Fred leaving little hints to himself as he starts to suspect that he's been through this before. Carved marks on the headboard. Cryptic messages written in dried blood on the corner of the bathroom mirror. Photos on the wall with their eyes burned out. Fred's only hope is to find a way to chip away at his own sanity, piece by desperate piece, until he can finally muster the courage to break the cycle. $\endgroup$
    – Dan Bryant
    Mar 6, 2017 at 17:54
  • $\begingroup$ That’s been done in Dr. Who with monsters that make you forget you saw them. $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Mar 6, 2017 at 19:04
  • $\begingroup$ @JDługosz yes, the Silence, I believe? $\endgroup$
    – Delioth
    Mar 6, 2017 at 20:50
  • $\begingroup$ @Delioth yes! I edited that into my remark. Thanks. $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Mar 6, 2017 at 23:58

I have a dog.

She has a red ball

All she wants to do is get a human to play with her and the red ball.

Okay, my dog is unlikely to drive anyone to the point of going mad and dying. Jimmy might be able to take a hint from my dog though. He could endeavor to appear as a lovable pooch and he could bring his ball. Jimmy would have to take care not to reveal tentacles and the like so there might be a period of trial and error with requisite gibbering, but if Jimmy is careful, widespread madness and casualties could be reduced.

Jimmy could also time his appearance with, say, Burning Man, so that the appearance of a friendly dog would go unnoticed and oddities like tentacles and the ball not behaving strictly in accordance with local physics could be rationalized by humans as a side effect of any recreational substances passing around.

If jimmy got picked up and taken home, I don't give great odds on that person maintaining sanity, but at least the people who hang out at Burning Man are generally mellow, so we could hope that bloodshed is minimal.

As far as communication, have you ever had a dog? I swear I can have lengthy conversations with my dog that make more sense than conversations with my friends. It doesn't need telepathy, just a little empathy and patience. Granted, it's risky when dealing with a creature from the beyond, but Jimmy might find it worthwhile. After all, Dogs can communicate the desire to play ball with very little problems.

Jimmy! Fetch!


Animal proxies

Either possess or telepathically communicate with a cat, and then use the cat as a proxy for playing with the red ball and humans. Assuming that the Jimmy can survive the purified essence of evil that composes the inner workings of a cat, the cat's cute exterior should protect humans from interacting with Jimmy.

In fact, this may already be happening...

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Having recently had a run in with a cat, I can confidently +1 this. $\endgroup$
    – Joe Bloggs
    Mar 8, 2017 at 7:22
  1. Horror needs to conceive a child with a human. As exemplified by Wilbur Whateley in The Dunwich Horror this can go fairly well for all involved. Including, surprisingly enough, the mother.

  2. Raise child to adulthood. Eldrich parent may be involved to greater or lesser degree. Said child will be horror enough to commune with horrible parent but human enough to commune with humans. It is possible that child might be too horrible to commune with humans (e.g. Wilbur's sibling) and so this might take more than one try.

  3. Child can play ball or mediate ball game or arrange eradication of all earthly life according to interests of parent (and child).

    from Deities and Demigods, 1st edition

Image from Deities and Demigods 1st edition

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ s/more than one try/one than more generation/. Either it succeeds, or you anger the good side and have your populace swept by a world-wide disaster that only eight people survive - and they only do so because they have been forewarned. $\endgroup$ Mar 4, 2017 at 23:20
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This can also lead to something like the Mother of Pus, so there's not quite a guarantee of enough humanhood to commune with humans. $\endgroup$ Mar 7, 2017 at 2:24

Anterograde Amnesia

Jimmy finds a human / causes a human to have Anterograde Amnesia. This causes the human to be unable to make new long term memories. The human will not remember what happened the previous day. There are cases where people can only remember the last five minutes, and some where they can remember what happened that day, but forget that day over night. As shown in the famous Henry Molaison case, Henry was still able to learn new skills, so if they play eldritch ball together, Henry will get better at playing, but will need to learn/review the rules every day. Maybe the human will subconsciously become more comfortable with Jimmy over time.

The wikipedia article on Anterograde Amnesia goes into more depth and has more notable cases worth reading for more uses of Anterograde amnesia in this scenario.


Sad, but determined Jimmy oozes over the alternative fabric of reality. There must be a way to be happy, to have someone to play with. So Jimmy simply opened his telepathic sense and listened very carefully, being very, very still. With practice Jimmy was able to listen after some unfortunate accidents of people going mad and committing suicide, the humans only had some nightmares.

Jimmy finally understood and thought he/she/it has found the solution.

A few days later, in the scanning room of the Secret Service.

Mr Smith: What the hell is in this envelope?! It smells...strange.
Mr Jones: No detection of chemical weapons or explosives. (Opens carefully). It's a letter.

Dear Mr. President,

my name is Jimmy. At least this is not my real name, but it is very hard to spell out for your species.

I want to have some playmates who are playing with me and my red ball. Unfortunately your species is quite fragile in my presence. You have very much power, so I thought to contact you because I am confident you will find me some nice playmates.

If you do not respond in one week, I am coming for you (Sorry for this inconvenience, but experience of your species tells me it is necessary to add this to initiate an immediate response). You find me at a location named Dunwich, Miskatonic River, Massachusetts, 10 miles north of the city center in an old barn.

Yours, Jimmy.

Mr. Jones: Those weirdos are getting better and better (laughs).
Mr. Smith: (chuckles). Yeah. Erm...(silence)...why is your arm turning blue?

NCC Live News. We are the eye of the world.
"Hello, my name is Rebecca Porter. I am here in the town of Dunwich in Massachusetts where a terrible tragedy has happened. I am talking to 4th star general Rupert Grant. General, what did happen?"
"(Looking really unhappy) Erm, we had an unfortunate....accident."
"An...accident. General, our sources indicate that a convoy of 6 black cars passed the city center at 10:00 AM and headed north. A radio amateur heard someone screaming, turning randomly encryption on and off and crying for backup. 30 minutes later over 40 blackhawk helicopters appeared, heading for the same location. Two hours later a complete army division turned up, fully equipped with combat helicopters and battle tanks, some of the tanks modified with flamethrowers. What is going on?" "Please excuse me. I have a very important meeting right now."

Dear Mr. President,

I am sorry if I was a bit messy, but it was really funny. All those things were quite tickling. It was very exciting to watch your reaction to all this news in your control room.

I see that you seem to search useless solutions. You cannot hide. I have visited this strange location where you store all those yellow metal and this location where all those bumpy things are stored and placed some things from both places in your bunker you think nobody knows of.

You also thought of those weapons you think are powerful. My comrades really like destruction, so I asked them to remove this strange planet/non-planet thingy from the edge of your solar system your astronomers are so proud of. Sorry if this was naughty

I was surprised that you are not all-mighty, other persons have also power. You can tell them I come for them if you fail me, too. I am sorry that your general poked himself into his eyes, I was invading his mind and cleared accidentally my....eating holes?

Yours, Jimmy.

NCC Live News. We are the eye of the world.
In an unexpected move every state of the USA reintroduced the death sentence and speeded up the process. Rumors have it that every expert on science and engineering have been invited to the White House in an extraordinary meeting.

Lawyer: Hello Mike!
Mike: Mmmm.
Lawyer: I know you will be killed tomorrow, but I was informed there is an option.
Mike: [questioning look].
Lawyer put a red ball on the table.
Mike: What?

What solution was finally found was unimportant: The automatic robot shielding the senses of the human steering it, the human guinea pigs trying to play with Jimmy as good as possible (drugged, hypnotized etc. etc.), finding other amusing games, the US goverment did everything they could think of to make Jimmy happy.

And Jimmy was happy.

  • $\begingroup$ What's the nontplanet thingie at the edge of the universe? $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Mar 7, 2017 at 23:16
  • $\begingroup$ This presupposes that the EH can write and post mail. That doesn’t explain how the EH can communicate, but shows what might happen after it establishes the capability. I looked over the Q again, and have to say that this is not an answer. $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Mar 7, 2017 at 23:23
  • $\begingroup$ Also, this answer kinda fails the "few casualties" test... $\endgroup$
    – DLosc
    Mar 8, 2017 at 9:55
  • $\begingroup$ @JDługosz Pluto. It is on the edge of our solar system, the former "universe" word was an error and I corrected that. The American astronomers resisted strongly to reclassify Pluto (because it was the only one detected by an American), that's the reason for the planet/non-planet quip. $\endgroup$ Mar 8, 2017 at 21:26
  • $\begingroup$ Pluto? Ha! $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Mar 9, 2017 at 8:14

Jimmy could communicate in Morse code. Naturally this would require that an Eldritch Monstrosity could understand such a human concept, but usually such creatures are known for driving humans mad -- not the other way around.

So, all Jimmy needs to do is create a series of tall and short statues, depicting Ichthala the All-Devouring Mother (or as he calls her, Mom) and her dread offspring. Sure, most humans would see them, investigate, and go mad -- but once the raging cultists have been put down, someone would have the bright idea of finding a code in the statues. (Though they might be confused by the message, "Come play ball with Jimmy.")

  • $\begingroup$ I think we could find many messages if we interpret the heights of statues... $\endgroup$
    – beppe9000
    Mar 5, 2017 at 18:49

Jimmy could inhabit horror movies, or "haunted houses" in fairs and theme parks, or present himself as a Bowie-like performer, or appear in some other place where he and his ball will largely be considered fictional.

Alternatively Jimmy could only speak metaphorically, in parables, koans and myths as religions generally do.

Jimmy could temper his message with great personal suffering so that others do not attempt to emulate him too closely, by nailing himself to a piece of wood, or (intentionally or not) going stark raving mad in his later years.

Jimmy could remain silent about the more horrific elements of his nature, and perhaps hide his ball till later.

Jimmy could say deliberately absurd things so as to make himself less plausible.

Jimmy could speak to people like a post-structuralists in obfuscating and deliberately difficult to understand prose so that the realization of his horrificness should arise slowly only to those prepared to put a lot of effort into understanding him.

Notwithstanding A4android's point which is valid to a degree, I think that there is future in YouStay Igo's answer, to attempt to approach the insane, or perhaps those from other disparate, non-rational cultures.

Or Jimmy could try to find other Jimmies, who appear to be doing the things mentioned above, or to find those that have been exposed to Jimmies and not gone permanently insane, possibly by posting questions to stack exchange austensibly about how to create a fiction.


Jimmy should try some camouflage, so the silly humans won't recognize him as a horror. He could try covering himself with the outer covering of a human, aka their skin.

Another popular tack is to breed a race of eldritch horror/human hybrids, in exchange for immortality, who aren't so bothered by his unspeakableness. They would be happy to play with him.

Or Jimmy could skip the part about driving people mad and find some people who are already crazy, someplace nice like a mental hospital in an isolated place should serve nicely.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I like the way you reduce the complexity of the problem to a simple choice: "Who would I rather play ball with, an Eldritch Horror or Ed Gein?" $\endgroup$
    – Wossname
    Mar 9, 2017 at 13:19

By using the universal language of Love

"You look kinda down, Jimmy."

He (it?) immediately recognized the guttural voice. "Oh, hi Pappy. It's just that... oh, nevermind."

"Let me guess: You want to play with the mortal inhabitants of Earth. Am I right?"

"Well, yeah." He (it?) looked gloomily towards the ball, and gave it a push with the tentacle closest to it.

"I see," said the voice, approaching the youngling. "Well, I'll teach you a trick I taught your cousin a long time ago. He wanted exactly the same thing - can you imagine? He may look all busy and important, but deep down he just wanted to be loved and have someone to play with him as well."

That piqued the young Eldritch Monstrosity's attention. Pappy smiled(?).

"You see, the trick is to understand them. Like delicate toys, you need to care for them.

They're skittish, so don't show yourself at first. They're curious beings, though: leave clues, and tell them about yourself at a gentle pace. That will get a few of them acquainted to you - some can't, but some will. And they'll come to you, wanting to play with you. Reward those, so others can see their happiness and desire to join the fun. They're fragile, and may catch a mind-disease or two, so make sure you inoculate them against most mind-germs.

Do these things, and I'm sure you'll have a bunch of new mortal friends to play ball with in no time."

Jimmy looked pensive for a while, but then his appendages erected in excitement. "Wow, Pappy, I think you are right! I'll try that, thanks!"

Pappy observed satisfied as Jimmy teared space and time itself, rushing with new purpose. He truly loved his great-great-grandson.


Assuming that Jimmy has no means of direct communication to humans without killing them (barring writing, which is clearly too dangerous), he must instead find an effective medium of communication. Something that both he and humans are capable of understanding.

For instance, humans have been trying to think of effective forms of communication with extraterrestrials for quite some time now. In fact, there are more human eyes and ears focused on the universe than ever, looking for any signs of life or communication. One thing that is often considered is mathematics. Many believe that mathematics comprise the rules of the universe, and therefore an intelligent civilization must live by those rules. Perhaps, since Jimmy is so powerful, he would have the means to create some mathematical, or even interstellar phenomena (creating/destroying things, radio waves, etc.) that, when manipulated correctly, would alert humans to an intelligent force in the universe. From that point humans could set up some form of zero contact communication.

How exactly that early communication evolves into the ability for Jimmy to ask a human to play ball would be up to you. This is simply a way for communication to start safely.

Another answer that does not involve the death of humans is this:

Jimmy uses a nearby intelligent race in the galaxy, hopefully one that can resist madness longer than humans, to communicate with humans in a way that does not make their minds implode.

This is also assuming that Jimmy cannot communicate through human languages, or he would have simply passed a note that said "Hey, wanna play ball?"


Nerve Stapling

Many other answers assume Jimmy tries to limit itself to 21st century technologies and ethics. However, eldritch horrors have little need or want to limit their behaviour this way. For eldritch horrors Death is just that dude who lives down the hall, and even the 22nd century envisioned by Sid Meier's "Alpha Century" provides a more direct solution for undesirable behaviour.

As Chairman Sheng-ji Yang says, Life is simply a collection of chemicals. If Life does not please you, simply edit those chemicals until it does. Insane behaviours such as starting murder cults and begging Jimmy for nap time can be edited out after the humans have been improved by the addition of Nerve Staples.

Death sees the fun the humans are having and shows up and wants to play with all the humans. That is a bit greedy of Death, but Jimmy likes Death anyway and has good fun playing with Death.

Alas, Death is not Life and has no nerves to staple. After the first few timeless aeons of play, Death goes a little funny and Death itself chooses to die rather than play with Jimmy anymore.

Jimmy is a little sad at Death's Death, but now can play with the humans for multiple infinities of time, or until Jimmy gets bored and looks for other playthings. Jimmy is glad he doesn't have to worry about humans dying from little things like limbs rotting off, or new tentacles growing through internal organs.

With only one death, this results in a lot less deaths than if Jimmy had let the silly humans waste valuable playtime eating, sleeping and dying.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ "That is not dead which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even death may die" - Chairman Yang of the Hive $\endgroup$
    – Joe Bloggs
    Mar 10, 2017 at 14:34
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Are you missing a word? Sid Meier's <what?> provides… $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    May 7, 2017 at 7:49

Being a higher order of being, Jimmy the Abomination has an important advantage over the creatures he is interested in: He exists in more dimensions than they are capable of perceiving without outside help. All Jimmy really has to do is orient himself so that only a small part of his multidimensional form intersects the 3D habitat of his playmate. He will likely not appear truly human, but with enough practice he can surely find a form to present that is nonthreatening enough for mere humans to tolerate. Of course, Jimmy has to be cautious of how he interacts physically with his playmate, lest he accidentally jaunt the poor soul along an unfamiliar axis and expose him to the true shape of the universe.


Oldie, but a goodie...


The trouble with eldritch abominations is that if their very form is capable of driving a human irrevocably insane, I'm not sure anything humans could construct would be capable of handling Jimmy either, and testing the boundaries for how much Jimmy they can handle would likely cause casualties. I'd strongly expect a computer to freeze or melt or start infecting humans. I wouldn't be surprised if we'd get a similar reaction when Jimmy meets the laws of physics. This could pose a problem with the longevity of his playmates.

So, what Jimmy needs is to create an intermediary being that is slightly less eldritch than it is. Still eldritch enough that it doesn't melt when Jimmy speaks to it, but a little step on the way to being human. Step1 then creates another being, slightly less eldritch than it (lets call it Step2), and so on and so forth until you have something that is actually capable of communicating successfully with a human.

Then, Jimmy can get its intermediaries to take his red ball, modify it slightly so it's slightly less reality breaking at each step and pass it down the line along with a note that will eventually translate to 'If you are human, please take this ball, perform these modifications and pass it back to Christopher Walken. Do not interrupt what he does next.'.

And hey presto! Jimmy's playing both Catch and Chinese Whispers, with (hopefully) zero casualties!

I would advise against progressing to Musical Chairs though...


Become a real estate developer. Since they expect you to be a monster, they'll just see you for what you are.

If that doesn't do it, become a reality-TV host.

I have one more suggestion but I'm reluctant to say it. It still won't win you over everyone, but half. Well, maybe a few million shy of half. But who's counting?



Jimmy tried to communicate with a physicist, and found himself the owner of a dozen books with crunchy trabeculae of spongy bone decoratively embedded in the pages. After much, much torment that could leave even an eldritch horror in a state of misery and confusion, Jimmy finally had done it: he understood electrostatics, electromagnetics, loop integrals, eigenvalues, even a little quantum mechanics though I'm not sure Cthulhu Itself has quite gotten that one down yet.

Now Jimmy posts his lectures to the internet and nobody goes mad, because nobody understands him. Even if he turns the video on, they just look in glazed-eye confusion and back at their notes again, before planning a second visit to the registrar's office.


They're in the Matrix

As Jimmy is ruminating after the death of his latest potential human friend and thinking "Why?! Why me? Why must I have such bad luck? Will I always be lonely?", he realizes the obvious truth--he's in a simulation. We're all in a simulation. And he comes up with a plan to get back at the cruel Creators of the simulation, so lacking in empathy that they refuse to give him a companion to play with.

With a little digging, Jimmy pieces together the details of how he came to be: our Creators made several simulations of widely varying worlds, and the worlds of mortals and Eldritch monstrosities are two of them. Now, an intern wrote some sloppy code allowing memory to leak out of the Void and into the mortal plane (yes, I know this isn't how memory leaks work, just humor me). This is what allows Jimmy and his friends to come greet us. Unfortunately, because Lovecraftian horrors have a different layout and size from objects from our world, they tend to corrupt the chunks of memory they are placed in when they visit us. This is what keeps causing teensy tiny glitches in the Matrix.

Now, Jimmy doesn't have the processing power or access available to him to modify the way the simulation works to allow him to seamlessly play with humans without damaging them. However, the Creators do, and he decides to send them a message. I'm not creative enough to think of what that would be, but think making the Sun implode or something. He lets the Creators know he'll keep doing this unless they give him a human companion to play with (these entities have tools to understand all the entities in all their worlds). If his demands are met, he'll persuade his fellow abominations to leave the humans alone and spread chaos in their own world. Win-win!

Of course, the Creators can delete him, but it will take a long time for them to hunt down where Jimmy is, given that he's a memory leak. In that time, he could wreak untold havoc, and they certainly don't want to waste their time piecing one of their precious worlds back together. Going along with him would help them keep our world safe while they fix the vulnerability allowing Jimmy's friends unrestricted access to our plane (don't worry, they'll let Jimmy and some select monstrosities through the Gateway to do research on "interdimensional interspecies interaction").

So, how can a Horror from Beyond Reason reliably communicate with mortals? Coercion, I guess.


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