Fetch the Black Gold
Time off was not part of the experimental parameters the 8th were always subject too. While it would’ve been fair to have a longer period of rest after each foray if, say, they had gotten particularly bland or stomach-cramping tinned food that time, their current stay at the base in Tampico was just a fluke. Continue reading
That Dog had Something to Say
He really had no idea why he brought the book, even the first chapter had been insufferable, but he was certainly glad for it now with the sun beating down on his head. With one end of it stuffed under his collar the thin open novel made an excellent neck shield. Its cool pages were a relief on the raw shedding skin there. Continue reading
The Cave is not an Allegory
Tampico would’ve liked to be known for its architecture. Their cast iron balconies could’ve been right out of any European city a century ago. No matter how desperate your search for god, there was a church in Tampico grand enough to handle it. Its people would gladly sit you down and, in the Catholic hospitality as immortal as their god, share the region’s bounty with you. A tortilla of pounded corn stuffed with roasted iguana meat. Or perhaps armadillo. That was without even considering the bounty of seafood. All you had to do was stay close enough to the buildings, and to the food, to smell them. Straying might mean getting a whiff of the oil in the air. Continue reading
Author’s Note: This novella was inspired by the animals mankind has used in warfare since the dawn of civilization. None of them knew what they were doing, but some of them surely wanted to help. I take you now to one special litter, born in a place not yet swallowed by the first world war.
Gal rested on her bed of dry straw and whimpered. One of her ears flopped over her eye; she didn’t bother to move it. The freshly-washed hands hovering over her thought this odd, so they moved in and pushed the ear back. Gal loved the light, loved chasing the setting sun to the marshy edge of the island, so there was no reason for her to not see the light in her litter’s eyes. They were due any minute now. One of the hands rested on her swollen belly, both petting and feeling for the position of the puppies. She couldn’t tell the difference. Continue reading
The problems for Jetson started around the mid 1900s. He’d taken off like a shot straight out of the year 3500. God bless his owner for having such a hell of an arm. Jetson had bounded flawlessly through the debris of 3000, the socialist secret-less utopia of 2800, and even skipped across the surface of the oil-covered oceans of 2500.
The damn 1900s however, were full of people who had no idea what they were doing. They stumbled between philosophies and religions like they were hemming and hawing at a buffet. It was a century full of explosions both literal and figurative, and either of them could’ve distracted Jetson. The real problem with running through time was not getting distracted by the sad sights. Continue reading
The prison had busted open more than one hundred years ago. Now vines crawled in through its windows and weaved between the bars of its small plastic cells. The cells for fish were long shattered, the glittering rainbow pebbles they had swam over were now spread across every aisle. The warden, the manager as the olds would have called her, was long gone. Her species and all its breeds were long gone.
The building was full of bad memories for most of the animals, at least the ones whose ancestors had been held there, in the gulag of the Pet me! Pet me! Pet store, but memories had no effect on the runty pug as it scurried through the colorful pebbles and kept its stubby snout glued to the floor. The dog ran into the darkness of the back, ducking under mops filled with cobwebs and mouse fur. Continue reading