I don’t have a title for this yet. First chapter of some humorous fiction. Might be fun to explore again.
All shit had broken loose. There was fucking in the streets, mimes committing suicide, and the gunfire of long repressed revenge filled the air. The grizzled head of chaos, whose hairs had occasionally sprung forth through societal cracks had finally broken through the collective pavement, and belched furiously as it did so.
Newscasters, some during coitus, had stated that a meteor was heading on a certain unerring course towards Earth and would be taking out a sizable chunk of the planet, effectively destroying all life. There were 24 hours left. The jig was up.
Seth had heard rumors in the course of his staring back at Big Brother that the Defense Department had constructed escape pods, which would launch their privileged occupants to the nearest planet capable of sustaining human life. It was too predictable and banal to be believed, but since the universal fan had now been struck by hefty helpings of proverbial scat, and we’re not talking Ella Fitzgerald, Seth figured he might as well check it out.
Sometimes the paranoid crackpots down the street had come up with frighteningly accurate information, and he had their packet of information that referred to the escape pods in his backpack. It was also amazingly convenient that he happened to be in Washington D.C. for a massive protest set to take place tomorrow at the White House. Plans had obviously changed.
Vehicles had piled up everywhere as the panicked, lemming-like masses were trying to drive somewhere, despite the fact that the entire planet was now a celestial bullseye. There was a panic and a stench that permeated everything like the odorous awkward fingers of a washed out Vegas playboy.
People had pissed themselves, shat and shot themselves, shot each other, and members of Congress and the House were seen taking massive amounts of drugs while crying and pleading with secretaries and interns to make their last moments worthwhile.
Seth found the phone booth that, according to his handy info packet, supposedly covered a hatch leading to an underground tunnel system. He picked up the phone and dialed the number given to him by his crackpot neighbors. The entire phone booth dropped suddenly, causing Seth’s rectum to take residence just under his Adam’s apple.
“Holy fuck,” he managed to mutter.
For several minutes he watched as well lit corridors flew upward as he sped past them like dentures after an elderly sneeze. The booth decelerated rapidly and caused his rectum to pack up its belongings, wave goodbye to the Adam’s apple, and move in with the knees.
Before him stretched a large corridor painted in that sickly green that can only be found in hospitals and military bases. Pipes ran along the walls, and fluorescent lights marched in single file along the ceiling forever. The atmosphere was as bland and institutional as an elementary school propaganda film about nuclear attack precautions from 1952.
He picked up the packet of information he had dropped while nearly crapping himself during his downward flight. He found a map and was relieved to see that he didn’t have that far to go. Only five miles. Great.
Seth wasted no time and began jogging down the unbearably drab corridor, his footsteps echoing flatly on the concrete walls and floor, and happened upon a golf cart-like vehicle. He sighed his relief as he climbed in, setting his backpack coated with slogans and patches with the names of punk bands held on with safety pins on the seat next to him.
The controls were ridiculously simple.
“Only the government could come up with this,” he thought.
There was a gas pedal, brake pedal, and to his right, a lever with two labels: “FORWARD” and “REVERSE”. While searching for a key he noticed a big red button on the panel. Above it, in stupid, simple block letters was a single word: “ON”. He pushed it and heard a click and a whirr. It occurred to him that at least they had the smarts to use electric vehicles in these confines. He pressed down on the gas pedal and was thrown back in his seat as he discovered that this was no ordinary golf cart. In a few seconds he was going about 40 mph down the corridor.
He stopped, checked his map for whatever turns he’d have to make, and started off again.
He managed to make it to his destination in about ten minutes. He located the right door and opened it. He found himself in a vast circular room with doors every twenty feet or so. In the middle of the room was a cylindrical ship that strangely resembled a giant metal dildo.
He noticed that he wasn’t alone. There were ten other people here, seemingly from various walks of life.
There was a man in a business suit, which he recognized as a Congressman.
Another man, in his early twenties, wore a shirt bearing the logo of a company that specialized in processors for home computers.
A woman in her forties with too much makeup and vacant eyes wore a white leotard, white shawl, and lavender sash. There was a big crystal around her neck.
Two obviously gay young men who looked like they just left a rave stood nearby.
One woman wore Abercrombie and Fitch clothing and had a nearly empty Starbucks cup tucked under her arm while she was engaged in the futile exercise of trying to get her cell phone to work.
A woman in her twenties with black jeans and a dark green t-shirt glowered at him and said “Oh great, another man.” Her hair was quite short and a pentacle dangled from her neck.
A woman with obviously fake tits, bitch-red lipstick, tiny shorts and a very low cut top eyed him with mild interest, like a failed Weight Watchers client on their sixth trip to the buffet, deciding whether to get the macaroni, mashed potatoes, fried chicken, or all three.
A scruffy young man in a tie-dye and dreadlocks stared skyward and quietly tapped on a drum. A cloud of patchouli, marijuana and sweat smells surrounded him.
And then there was a smiling old man in his sixties, dressed like Baron Munchausen, with a big mustache, sideburns and goatee, and he even had a cane. His nose and cheeks were an alcoholic, ruddy red, and he winked at Seth while rocking back and forth on his heels as if he had just imparted a secret.
The Congressman spoke: “Well, if you’re here, there’s not a whole lot that can be done about it now, and you probably know what’s in store. We’ve got to take a ride in this ship and somehow civilize and populate a whole new planet.” At this his eyes wandered to the buxom blonde and she winked at him. The bepentacled woman’s eyes rolled as if they were inside a slot machine. Most of the people in the room looked at him in disbelief of his forthright chauvinism. The Munchausen look-alike tapped his temple with his wizardly finger and said “Methinks our man thinks himself among interns!”
The Congressman cleared his throat, like a dune buggy that uses frying oil for fuel, and continued: “There’s not much sense waiting around any longer, so we may as well get on with it. Say goodbye to Earth, folks.”
The white leotard lady began crying and then started to om. Many eyes rolled.
They climbed in and strapped themselves to seats that were arranged in a circle. A couple seats were still empty. On a panel in the center were a screen and several buttons, the most prominent of which was large and red. Seth winced. Above it, bold as a pimp on crack, was that steadfastly instructive word: “ON”.
Once everyone was seated and strapped in, the Congressman leaned forward to press the big red button. There was a frantic banging on the door.
Everyone looked at each other to see if the door should be opened. “Whoever it is, fuck them!” said the Abercrombie clad woman. “We’ve got to get out of here!”
“Well,” replied Seth, “If we have to start a whole new civilization, we’ll need all the people we can get!”
“I think I have to agree,” said the pagan lady. She turned to the Congressman. “Besides, they might be chicks.” She winked.
The Congressman opened the door and in climbed a couple in their thirties. He in slacks, an Oxford shirt, and an Argyle sweater vest, and she in a gingham dress. They strapped in, thanking everyone profusely.
The Congressman pushed the button and as the door locked itself. The newly arrived couple shrieked in unison, “Praise the Lord!!”
The woman with the pentacle looked at Seth and in unintentional unison they said, “Oh shit.”
© 2015 William Suphan