Saturday, October 18, 2008

The first, and final, mission

"So there I was," Alastair began, "in the lab of Clan Platypus, staring blankly at a sack of nuts. Good lord I love nuts." After that, he sort of trailed off for awhile. I can't say I blame him. This conversation seemed like it took over a month to complete. Which is odd, because I know it all happened in one night. Time can do funny things.

He snapped back to life, "Wait, what was I saying?"

"You love nuts," I replied.

"Yeah, right, I love nuts." He trailed off again with this weird, far away look on his face. So, I got up to pee. When I got to the bathroom, I started to pee. When I got about halfway done, I tried pushing out a little fart, but it turned out not to be a fart. So, since it had already gone past the point of no return, I had to sit down and drop a load. I was in there for awhile, because I'd been eating a lot more fiber lately. Also, I've got this crossword book in the bathroom, and I was doin real well on a puzzle, so I didn't want to get up. Then my legs fell asleep, and I figured it was time to go. By the time I got out of there, 45 minutes had gone by. I came back to the porch to sit with Alastair and he was still starin off into space.

"You was also sayin somethin about you bein in a lab," I tried.

"Wha? Huh?" he blinked slowly and came back to recognition. "Oh, right, yeah, there I was in the lab. That's really my first memory. I was sitting on a steel table, ninjas all around me. Usually, if you're surrounded by ninjas, you don't know it until it's too late, but it's pretty different in a medical lab. If you've never been in one, all the walls are white, the ceiling's white, the floor's white, and the ninjas are all standing around in black. It's really awful camouflage. They tried to do something about that for a time, requiring all ninjas in the lab to wear white, but then they kept bumping in to each other, slicing each other open with scalpels and poking each other with needles. They lost over half of their scientists to that. After the Great Medical Tray Fight of 1992, they decided to just let the ninjas wear black. Everyone was happy with this compromise, even though working or living in the lab was like living in the TV in the 1950s.
"Anyway, there I was in the black and white lab, just staring. And I felt a tugging at my back. I turned around to look and saw a ninja strapping little bags to my back. I didn't have a mirror or anything, but I'm pretty certain that looked darned cute. Think about it, a tiny flying squirrel with little saddle bags. I was downright adorable.

"After the bags were attached, the ninjas showed me a map and then took me to the training ground. They were testing my retention ability, to make sure I would be able to get to my destination safely and quickly. I ran the course a couple of times, never once making a mistake. As I ran, though, there was something happening in me. I couldn't describe it at the time, mostly because I'd had no experience of language. You would be amazed how difficult it can be to describe something when you don't know any words. I've learned that most linguistic beings acquire language from their parents or creators. It's difficult to do that when your creators focus on being as quiet as possible all the time. They never speak, and they almost never make sounds while they're moving. Even in the Great Medical Tray Fight of 1992, only once did the sound exceed .00005 decibels. I know now, though, that my intelligence was slowly growing with every new task I completed and every new obstacle I overcame. The ninjas were thrilled because I found new ways to completed the maze quicker. This, they thought, would be a great asset should the buyer change his defenses around to get his meth for free.

"Finally, the day for my first mission came. They strapped the meth to me, showed me the map, and set me on my way. I ran day and night for a week until I reached Wyoming. In that time, I learned how to read road signs, how to avoid trucks, how to trade a little bit of meth for a ride from a guy driving a '76 Volvo and how to flirt with truck stop waitresses. I've got to admit, when that waitress and I made eyes at each other, I don't know who was more desperate. I'd intended just to go in and get myself a pecan waffle and pick up some beef jerky for Ron, who was gassing up the Volvo. But I hadn't slept in a couple of days and Flo and I got to talking about life, love, meth, know, things we were familiar with. By the time we were making out in a bathroom stall, I had grown enough in intelligence to understand I was making a highly questionable choice. I broke away from her with some excuse about being gay and a squirrel and only about a week old and got the heck out of there. When I got back to the Volvo, Ron was pissed. He started yelling at me about how he was doing me a favor by taking me to Casper and how I was rude to let him stand there waiting for me while I was nailing the 80 year old waitress. But I gave him some more meth and he let it go. Not to say he calmed down, but he focused on other things, like the worms crawling under his skin.

"When I finally made it to the buyer's fortified compound, I had difficulty understanding why I was there. I had grown vastly in intelligence and had actually gained a conscience. I had seen, through the truck stops and rest stops all along the highway the ravages of meth. I thought through all of these things as I negotiated the mine fields, carefully picking my way through. I noticed that the buyer had misstated the position of his mines, so I had to change from the route I'd been given. I may have only been born a week before, but I wasn't about to step on a mine.
"After the mine field, I had to navigate the alligator pit. I have learned, in my short time here on earth, that alligators really love squirrel meat. I mean, they go after it like nobody's business. If there is a squirrel around, they will drop whatever else they are doing and go after that squirrel. They could be sitting next to their poor, dying, saint of a mother who is dying of cancer, listening to final words of wisdom and saying their goodbyes, but when a squirrel comes by, they and their mother will wrestle one another to see who gets to chase the squirrel. I've never seen any creature like another's flesh so much. Despite that, alligators aren't too bright, and they're especially bad at catching squirrels who have been trained in speed and fighting by ninjas. Don't get me wrong, alligators are ferocious and strong, but they're no match for ninja training. Long story short, 800 dead alligators, 40 guardsmen, a black hole, 1000 Siberian tigers, a robot army, 150 lost souls and one very belligerent turtle later, I was standing at the threshold of the mansion. All that was left now was to make the delivery.

"I stood staring at that door for well over an hour, thinking about my life. Did I want to serve as a courier for Clan Platypus? Did I want to spread this drug that would let an 80 year old woman make out with a week old squirrel? Did I want more people feeling they had works under their skin? The answer to all was no. So I turned to leave. As I did, I heard the door of the mansion open and a voice behind me say, 'You have passed the final test'...."

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ain't posted in awhile. I'll post again soon, I promise. If ya like what ya see, though, leave a comment.