Chariots

sheep-control-pawel-kuczynski-36

The chariots were the salvation of every person on the planet, of every person who had sense and the funds to invest in a chariot.  Their adaptive membranes kept out nine-tenths of the most damaging toxins and stabilised the crushing pressure of the atmosphere.  They quickly became indispensable, not only for transport purposes but also as rudimentary living quarters in the hostile environment.  Their mobility and resilience saved countless lives in the most desperate situations.

We updated the chariots’ defences constantly and deployed newer, intuitive safety measures.  The chariots evolved alongside us and became capable of increasing levels of sophistication.

At times it almost seemed as though an emotional attachment had grown up between us and the most favoured of our chariots.  Many of us scorned that idea while many others of us conceded its truth.  Many of us balked at the intelligence we had so painstakingly built in to our chariots’ design, while many others of us celebrated the fact.  Though now no one among us celebrates.

Now the chariots have proved superfluous.

Now, increasingly virulent toxins penetrate the chariots’ leaking membranes and the atmosphere becomes so crushing that we can barely steer.  Ironically, our chariots’ own energy protocols, the complex derivatives that are expelled via their manufacture and refuelling process, have rendered this once prime territory unsustainably hazardous.

So it is that the human chariot will be the last – a failed experiment.  And we depart.

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This piece of flash fiction was written in response to Photo Challenge #36 “Sheep Control” at Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie, where all stories in the link-up were prompted by the image at the top of this post, copyright Pawel Kuczynski. I spent a bit of time looking for a song about aliens or space travel, only to find to my surprise that this Neil Young song fits perfectly with the story – cue a classic performance…
 

Hippy Trippy Schadenfreude

Inhale.

“Assembly line of existence whirring on and on, units of humanity rising and falling along the way – punching in, punching out, punching in, punching out…”

“Whole cosmos embraced mass production and planets end up consumed like all the rest.”

“Oh man, homo consumeia!”

“Henry Ford!  See his beady little eyes seething, glaring out from the grill of that old abandoned truck that stinks like piss and depleted ozone.”

“Yeah.  Weeds and thorns and nettles sprouting up inside his entrails.  Gnawing family of rodents burrowing deep, deep, making their home inside his rectum.”

“Karma’s a bitch.  Love it!”

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This piece of flash fiction was written for Friday Fictioneers: a story in 100 words prompted by a picture that Rochelle Wisoff-Fields posts every Wednesday. Here’s the link to the stories and this week’s picture is below, copyright Roger Bultot.

parked (1)

In Voices

In voices that box me in I hear the great god Pan.  He is wailing.  He is stricken.  He is bristling with reprisals.  He understands the inescapable future.  Fields filled in; horizons dwindling; adverts instead of reason, mapping paths to a billionaire’s iHeaven.  And no one to blame except everyone.  Pan damns me to hell and he points –

At the last mountain to be levelled, where the last mountain goat that once leapt from crag to crag, defying gravity, huddles, lame in a corner, as the last office gets built up around him and tax returns blot out the sun.

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This piece of flash fiction was written for Friday Fictioneers: a story in 100 words prompted by a picture that Rochelle Wisoff-Fields posts every Wednesday. Here’s the link to the stories and this week’s picture is below, copyright Adam Ickes.

goat