The Oddballs will inherit the Earth [Draft / Extract / WIP]

The oddball tended to lurk best in corners, lank frame fitted well into dark urban alleys
framed like Nosferatu in the shadow of the night. He was skeletal and bone, a mess of contradictions and confusions. He skulked around late at night looking for answers, an unholy ancient fire burned in his mind, burned for an answer to an unknowable questions, revelling in disorder. A student of Neo-Nihilism – The church of the infinite nothing, he jeered, he sneered he rattled and railed. A circle in a world of squares, bent double against the lamppost he stomped his way down the concrete streets to get back to his flat, half cut from the 6 beers he’d drank on the way back from his work downtown, now stumbling autopilot style back to the mess he called home.

Stumbling up the rusty metal staircase, his vision blurring he arrived at this flat, turned the key and fell like a rock onto his bed, the world turning and whirring, his mind in some sort of swirling vortex. Memories churned and danced in his minds eye, his youth, his loves, his losses, his pitiful moments, his self despair, his bullshit.

And eva, she got in there too. She always did, at times like these when he was alone, she was never far from his thoughts, the ghost at the membrane just waiting for a chance to break the skin. “Not now” he thought as he turned off his light and stumbled into a dark and numb sleep of nothing.

A roaring digital screech pieces nothingness and the Oddball’s eyes slowly open, he lifts himself up in a daze, looks around his room and groans, throwing a book at the alarm system on the other side of his room, “Fuck off!” He shouts. “Command Not recognised” replies the alarm AI”, “Stop Alarm” shouts Oddball, louder this time. “Goddammit, you fucking thing” he whispers silently under his stinking hungover breathe, before falling back into a deep slumber once more, to be swallowed in the mire of his own mind.

Then in a large room, a machine mantis staring down, long tendrils extending out from it’s mechanical insectoid form as it’s beady LED eyes look down at the Oddball and it’s disgusting mechanical mouth begins to move – “Oddball, we have searched our records and found you are in dire need of a reprogramming, you believe yourself to be a humanoid in the year 2060, in the city of Berlin. We must perform a cranial re-adjustment to fix this, so prepare fo…”

BOOM

The impact is so loud the whole neighbourhood is woken up by it, the impact blast reverberating though the street, Oddball jumps up from his bed, a look of wild confusion on his face as he stumbles for his glasses in the early morning light. “What!!! What! Was that!!?” he thinks in a hungover haze.

He rushes to his flat window and peers over, and then there on the other side of the street he sees a car smouldering and burning, horrified onlookers gathered round. Two people inside the car seems to be burning, and it all starts playing out in Oddball’s head in slow motion, the licking flames dance like some macabre spirit had possessed them, the burning flesh like some devil’s dance though the street, demonic and dire. Death Masks of shock and horror line the faces of the gathering crowd.

Oddball returned to his bed and grabbed his notepad, time to write he thought, he had to document this down, keep a record of this moment, and cynically he thought perhaps he could get that first published article out there with an account of an event like this, he grabbed his pen and notepad, hurriedly got dressed and ran out the front door.

“realty re-adjustments, you’ll experience a few strange events whilst we reset yourrr…”

Oddball rushes out into the street and observes the scene around him, woman men and children’s gather outside, with looks of shock and disgust. He grabs his pen from his black shirt and starts to scribble down notes, “What are you doing” a voice suddenly says to his right, “I’m…I’m writing” he says turning to see a woman with dark hair and sunken sullen eyes, staring deep into the flames, the light dancing off her strong features. “Why?” she retorts, “Why bother?” “They’ll keep on destroying regardless of how much we write against them, these mechanical Mantis fucks!, heartless beasts of our reason.” “Umm ok if you say so” Oddball says looking away from her and returning to his notepad. “Didn’t you hear me? Write that down in your little notepad!” Oddball beginning to feel nervous slowly edged away. “Do you know what happened here?” Oddball asks, “Why ask that question, when I just answered it? It’s the Mantis folk man. They’re responsible for all this terror, all this horror. You hear me, there were kids in that car man, senator of the state, wife two kids, now burning because our government can’t negotiate with the problem we all created”. Oddball just nods, his gaze returning to the burning husk of the car down the road as the security service bots mechanistic Mantis drone engines produce a loud abrasive buzz as they hover down the street, spraying water onto the burning car carcass. Take it all in he thinks, hurriedly scribbling down more notes.

“main system core, but don’t worry the flashes will stop eventually whilst we reboot your primary functions, so just remain calm”

“I’m sorry I didn’t quite catch your name” Mumbles Oddball to the young dark haired woman “Eva” she responds, Oddball freezes for a second in shock, ‘Eva?’ He thinks in frozen panic, before his rationale kicks in. “Are you from around here?” he enquires “Yes I live just a up way Jackson Block, why?”, “Well, the thing is I’m a writer and I’m looking to get some accounts of today’s bombing, did you see much before it happened?”
“Not much to be honest, I just heard the explosion and came out to check it out”
Oddball scribes it down then asks “What makes you think the Mantis folk could be involved in this? Don’t you trust AI?” “Nah man, call me old fashioned if you like but I prefer when we didn’t put so much power into the hands of these tin cans, like where is it leading you know? People say I’m paranoid and a luddite but how clever are those things you know? I don’t trust them”, “Hmm” Retorts Oddball “but when has there ever been a recorded incident of a Mantis flipping out? Don’t you think it more likely to be some sort of political attack?, a bit of old fashioned organic vs organic violence, I mean if the Neo-Nihilists have taught me anything, it’s that if there is one thing you can trust us humans on, it’s ultra violence in the pursuit of powe…” “Look Dude. that’s my opinion you can take it or leave it but I gotta be places ” and with that Eva strolls away into the distance, turning for a few seconds as she crossed the road and glancing with her sullen sad eyes to the sky. She strangely reminded Oddball of her, but he knew it could not be so.

“And there we go, your booted up again Oddball, tell us what did you dream whilst encased in the nether? So that we may delete the residual memories” “Oddball blinks in static space but can’t speak his mind outputs the lines “Where am I? Who are You? What is this? Where is my body?” The lines are spat as 0’s and 1’s in data onto the large monitor screen in the Mantis repair lab. “We need to do a fresh flush Mantis 1986, he’s still gone” and with that everything went black.

Oddball quickly starts running through the chaotic streets recording everything he see’s around him as he darts in and out of the gathering masses, the buzz and whirr of the Mantis Mechs punctuating the air, the smell of acrid burning smothering, until he collapses into his room, and sits down at his desk, ready to write. “What a way to start a day” he thinks, as he pulls the gear to the side of him to boot up his AI interface and prepares for a long haul. Hours pass, and then more, a torrent of words rushes forth from his fingers until he can barely remember who or where he is, the symbiosis of words and mind, a subtle dance… Coffee.

“Sleep, young one sleep, it’s ok they are gone they have passed far from here, you’ve no need to worry anymore, our adepts will protect you” said the tall woman softly with a smile, her body draped in the black robes, her complexion white, with green eyes and dark brown hair extended down over her shoulders, giving her the appearance of some old world Slavic angel. Alice looked up and smiled, her shaking subsiding and she returned to her lotus position, “The mantis people are far away now” She thought, still shaking a bit “They won’t find me here, they can’t find me…” Alice thinks as she drifts into sleep.

“Mother Nothing protect her” thought the sister, slowly walking down a corridor lit with the glow of red neon and the sound of pulsing ambience. Just another day in the citadel.

There we go think Oddball, that’s done! he thinks as he completes the edit on the piece on the explosion from today, he thought he had done it justice, covering the mood of the crowd, the potential causes and groups that could be involved, well researched, concise and with a human touch, he could be in the money and out of the red by next week! The thought gives me a rare instance of a smile on his pale face, as he sends it off to print, and prepares to walk to the offices of  ‘Der Wahrheit’ to hand in his manuscript.

 

 

 

 

 

Wondering God [Prose / Short Story]

The cage of sanity, preserved and solemn sacred space in a mental landscape of shattered cultural remixes, shamanic, shambolic, American consumer smiles, Chinese Tao daydreams, Indian snake oil Spiritual visions, the sacrifice of the Jesus Child, Satan’s self aggrandising selfhood, the whole mother-load of ego baggage and spiritual mumbo-jumbo clambering and fighting for a way in.

The cage of sanity is a refuge, a dim light in a landscape of contradiction and conflict, men could go mad in those waters, and most who venture were never to be seen again, drowning as they do in their own ego visions, blinded to the truth and guided to the Godhead by obscene and trickster lights. Not Morpheus, he had been taught well how to navigate between these planes of belief, how best to navigate the will through the energy fields of the unconscious spheres. Trained well, protected by ancient knowledge, knowledge that preceded even the Godhead’s all seeing eyes.

Ha that trickster Serpent who thinks it knows all men, Godhead, Abbadon – two sides of the same coin. Meaning found in chaos by beings trapped on a 4 Dimensional plane Morpheus thought to himself, silently under the cover of his cage.

Morpheus cackled from above – splintered over his multidimensional form across 3 separate fields of navigation. Observing itself, himself and herself from it’s vantage point in the cage of sanity he smirked, to be higher than the Godhead was a blasphemy he delighted in. A temptation he indulged, so that it may not hold power over him.

He moved silently in 5 dimensions now, his form ebbing in and out of the unconscious cubes beyond the meta-chamber, where the horrors grasp and sway at silent night, gasping and drowning silently in some ghost’s bondage, a sly wink down confirms his passage as they clear, and he sets course for the light in his floating cage of sanity, drifting at past the speed of thought to reach his destination – The Central Godhead Dictatorate.

Faster through the nexus he plunges into the nervous system of the ever living Godhead bastard, faster until forms merge into one universal light, one lightbulb of infinity, like a moth to a flame, floats Morpheus to find his light, basking in it’s glory the fractal Godhead burns in all directions, a light to all who seek answers, beyond good and evil. And then penetrating skin he arrives in the halls of the unknown, surrounded by the endless hills, eyes winking and mouths twitching in twenty different unseen ways.

The Godhead Bureaucracy stares at Morpheus with disdain, the disdain which had become their hallmark – “Desire Morpheus?”, “I desire the will of the sane, and to cast that which is rotten and unclean in man into the depths of clarity, to obtain some sense of reason Lords, I have become so tired on my journeying through the unfettered depths, these metaphysical exertions are burning me out, I tire of the Underground Caverns, the untempered skin chasm, the burning void, I need some sense of meaning, something to will me to continue, some work beyond the great Godhead’s word and will”.

The Bureaucracy stares with mechanical eyes at Morpheus for a second, blinks without comprehension and then delivers it’s mechanical and well rehearsed answer – “You think even the Godhead can give you this Morpheus? Meaning? Meaning can only be found in service, some service themselves, some others, most divulge something from that sublime madness that can be found betwixt waking and dream, search harder and longer Morpheus, and the answers should present themselves, and do not fear the riddle, it is in the mystery that any meaning can be found. Confront your fears and do not run from them, instead run to them and embrace them, cancel them out, what do you fear?”

Boredom, that was the terrible truth, he’d seen a thousand dying meta-worlds become and then disappear, seen aeons of species both familiar and alien all die across the stretch of a billion years, watched as entire worlds burned in acrid fire of storm and ash, whilst others ascended to the stars across a billion light years in desperate search of that which he know stood before, trillions of worlds and lives all sacrificed to this – the Godhead. The eternal abomination that dwells beyond. Mechanistic, yet organic, the meeting place of all contradictions in mind, into this – the all knowing mind.

He responded “It is nothing, I will continue to observe and record as much data as possible to the Bureaucracy databanks, I shall reflect and meditate upon your reflections on a Terra world, and seek to eliminate all contradictions into the unity.”.

The Bureaucracy telepathically projects a smile, and then whirring processing machines rise from the surface of Nova 2, to record this moment forever in the vaults of the Godhead.

Morpheus did wonder then and again, but then what God does not?

It is in the wondering that any meaning can be found, to avoid the rot, now there’s the trick.