Oh, There It Is

Strange how easy you forget something virtual exist when you do not make it a bookmark in your preferable web browser. Ha, and people say evolution is dead.

What?

No, I don’t have any idea either. In any case; I’m in the process of falling on my knees with the most extreme case of puppy eyes in my… eyes to, while pleading like a bankrupt broker bartering baboons, get a stinking job so I can actually function like a human being. Thank Shiva for parents.

During this exciting, and very masculine happen-stance, I have begun writing again. But instead of going into my disgustingly researched and familiar world (no name yet), which is currently firmly set in a low-fantasy setting, my brain and fingers hatched a nefarious plan to make me write about a, quite random, female scavenger, of sorts, in a sort of Fallout-esque type of place – only with more dust, sand, sun (two suns to be exact) and proper accommodations; and less wildlife. I would not call it Science Fiction because, well, there is no science in it. Durp. Unless you count taking a crash course in how binary solar systems work, how to properly use a surface to reflect as much heat as possible, as !Science! of course. Which I don’t.

Currently I am asking myself “Should I put the first thousand words on this here printing press of words in the faint hope that someone with some constructive critique might read it and offer insight in how to make it better…”.

The thing is that, and bear with me there ol’ fella, you can get your tea and biscuit later; the introduction? The first hundred words (or so)? It looks and reads like some cheesy romance novel (a.ka “SEX MOTHER FUCKER, DO YOU SPEAK IT!”). This, I can tell you with a hand on the heart and other organs deemed trustworthy (liver for example), was reeeeeeally not intended to be.

I personally don’t see it (I had to actively think about it to notice it) and would probably see past it anyway  – because I know where the story is heading… and let me tell you – I’m glad the characters in a story has no way to grab the writer by the throat and bash him in – but I think other, non-initiated, Blasphemers will see it as such. I can’t blame them, really.

And it’s…

You know what? Screw this babbling nonsense/excuses. Here, take a bloody draft of a short story. Don’t like it or find it uncomfortable? Then you can climb up a flagpole and tyr-damn wrestle a purple buddha-damn turtle you inexorable Flabbergaster!

Ignore the crappy formatting. I’m not going to spend hours trying to make it look like it does when I’m actually writing on it. Coincidently; you know the program Scrivener, currently being in development (beta/free) for Windows? It’s awesome. Use it. Do it.

Kareza – One Destination Or Nothing

As the sprawling cityscape of a dusty biome slowly came alive in the morning, the rays from the smaller sun shone upon the rusty, vertical, metal blind that covered a wide, dirty window high above the ground in a building identical in shape as ones nearby. The rays illuminated the room in bright stripes and something stirred in a fairly large bed. The bed was covered in a thin, faded white, bedding sheet and cushions in various colours, many also faded. With a pleasurable groan; two arms stretched out from under the bedding sheets, waking up the nerves. A woman rose from under the sheets, yawned and pushed a clingy lock of chestnut hair from her vision. Another sleepy groan escaped from the bed. The awake woman looked down at the person who lay beside her and smiled. She lay down again, embraced her partner and kissed her on the cheek.

“Morning has arrived, my sweet”, she whispered with a purr and the woman opened her brown eyes slightly and returned a smile.

“As it always does, my Kareza,” she said, yawned slightly and ran a hand through Karezas tumbled hair with a warming smile.

“Will you be going Outside today?” the woman asked but when Kareza nodded the smile turned slightly sour.

“I’ll be going as soon as I am dressed,” Kareza said.

“No time for us then?” the woman returned with a pouting lower lip.

Kareza laughed and planted a gentle kiss on her lips.

“You know how precious the chill is, Tri. Every hour, every minute is important,” Kareza answered, moved closer and caressed Tris hand “I will return before the Scorch. We will have all the time in the world during that, after your shift,” she continued and Tri seemed content – at least less discontent. Another passionate kiss sealed the complaint away.

After a few minutes of lying in the comfort of each others arms while the sunlight ever so slowly moved the stripes of light in the room, Kareza untangled herself and stepped up from the bedside.

While Tri let the sweet embrace of a soft bed linger a bit longer, Kareza got dressed. After getting the underwear on she gathered up and started putting on her “work” clothes.

A loose, white and brown, overall with deep pockets, the upper part she tied around her waist; the white jacket with the endless amounts of pockets; the hat with a wide flap that could be used to cover her face if dust showers became intense; a pair of thick goggles with reflective glass and sturdy brown boots and gloves. Every piece of attire – except the goggles – was well worn – patches covered holes of various sizes – but it was practical and reliable. After clipping on her belt and various tools to it, she spun around once with a flourish.

“How do I look?”, Kareza asked and Tri smiled sweetly.

“Like a dirt bandit.”

“Precisely the fashion direction I was going for!” Kareza said and they shared a laugh. Tri then pointed to the wide window.

“Now, get out of here before I regret letting out of my arms!” Tri demanded and Kareza blew a kiss toward Tri – who still had many hours left before her shift began at the Preparation Unit, and so enjoyed the bed – before grabbing a long barbed trident that rested by the wall and picked up a empty medium sized sack with her free hand. She approached the window.

Outside she saw tall white buildings packed together in a organised fashion, tall spires reaching for the clouds. She could barely see the ground. One in three of the apartment buildings showed signs of desertion, the walls packed with holes and rust, concrete beams exposed to the harsh climate.

The empty shells of apartments was under constant brutal exposure to the scorching sun and the blinding heat of the weekly Scorch. With the decreasing population and the decline of manpower a fourth of the buildings in the whole city had been deserted and left to crumble or melt. The Protection Unit focused only on the buildings with use or suitable amount of inhabitants. Kareza pushed a depression beside the window. A square hatch clicked twice and opened by the corner of the room.

Kareza dropped down the sack and started climbing down the ladder that led down into a rectangular, walled off, platform. Only a tube of condensed luminescence oil, extracted from the domesticated Slother reptile, filled the sparsely populated, but still crowded, platform with a deep orange light. Kareza picked up the sack on the floor and approached her other life long partner and ran a gloved hand over its dull metallic surface.

Her smile was slightly sad when she inspected all the bumps and scratches populating the former spotless surface of her hover bike. Its slender middle portion with the comfortable seat and the two handles for steering to the both ends where the large fans sat in between the protective filters, all covered with scratches – the metal was faded and rusty at places. Kareza had ridden it for many thousand days, and it never let her down. It might malfunction once in a while but it always came through in the end.

She hooked the trident in a slot by the left side, which clicked, then straddled the seat finding just the right position. She inserted a card, pushed a button and the fans began spinning up. Very soon she achieved lift in the cramped platform. Kareza took a breath, slightly bent over, grabbed the handles and aimed a light kick at another depression in the wall. The walls drew away, up into the roof, into a hidden compartment. Light and wind exploded into the small garage and the noises of a waking city overpowered the noises from the bike. She turned one handle clockwise which made the back fan turn slightly upward and the bike burst away from the secluded platform, into the open air.

With a wide smile Kareza plummeted down several hundred feet, the wind deafening, before she turned the handle and the hover bike gained latitude before flattening out, still accelerating. The bike soon reached maximum speed and Kareza shoot through the cityscape of The Bastion, the aptly named and last remaining city of the Colonistos; speeding past shining rooftops of apartment buildings, factories and offices. She dove between a narrow passageway between two buildings and emerged to an open plaza where both the ground far below and the sky was populated by people, markets, statues, vehicles and hover bikes of all kinds.

The first sun was above the horizon, on its short way toward zenith, and it cast long shadows over the city with already sweaty people had been gathering at, these cool spots.

Kareza started to lower the bike toward the ground, aiming for a free space by a large stall. Slowing and hovering down, she soon landed on the flat rock ground. A group of lightly clothed people sat close by, on the shadow side of a large statue, depicting the First of the Council. One was dressed in similar fashion as Kareza and, when noticing her, gave her a curt nod. He had short black hair and a crooked nose. His eyes was attentive, challenging even. She returned the nod but felt no camaraderie with this man, whoever he was. Nor did she feel the need to compete. She knew that outside the city all notions of politeness stayed in the city and he would more than likely stab her in the back than not, just to get rid of some competition.

Kareza approached the large mobile stall; bustling with activity as cooks and servitors handed packets of various foods to the customers. It was not a long line and soon Kareza stood before a heavyset man, sweating even in the shade, that handled the orders. His eyes lit up along with his big smile when he noticed Kareza, after wiping some sweat from his forehead with a handkerchief.

“Ah Kareza! My favourite customer! Will it be the usual today or shall I surprise you?”, the man said with a jolly voice, exasperating slightly.

“You know me too well Fryn – I’ll take the usual for now. I find surprises more palpable after the Scorch,” Kareza responded, returning the infectious smile.

“Then I shall dazzle you with a culinary treat after the blasted Scorch! Nothing like a Scorch to wet the appetite isn’t that truth! The usual coming up!” Fryn said, went back into the kitchen area and shouted some orders to the cooks. Kareza did not envy them, working in a crowded space, filled with heat on a day like this. At least some comfort was had that the stall had retracted the roof, letting some chill in, however small. A few minutes later Fryn returned with a wrapped packet, which he handed to Kareza and she in return handed Fryn five pieces of Common Gold. They exchanged friendly goodbyes and Kareza went back to her bike, put the packet inside the small compartment in between the handles and then started the bike up again.

Rising slowly up in the air, Kareza speed away and past the market plaza; diving into more narrow passageways, rising above several rooftops, diving and rising as obstacles emerged into view.

Then she broke through the landscape of buildings and entered a dead world of sand and dust.

And that’s it for now. Thoughts? Complaints? Cupcakes? Did the turtle bite you? Good. You deserved it. I think.

((four visitors before this post ended up in the backside of obscurity. I want to thank the Academy and a dog I don’t know…))

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2 thoughts on “Oh, There It Is

  1. Great story you’re brewing in there! Reminded me a lot of Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Eye of the Heron. I really found the Slother reptile funny.
    Maybe you could have added a few more descriptions of what the ‘Outside’ looked like from the girls’ bedroom? I gather that they were living in some sort of suburbia, since Kareza had to travel to the main city for work.

    • Thanks for reading it!

      You are right, Kareza and Tri are living in a sort of suburban section of the Bastion. It’s a bit more run down and more sparsely populated than the inner city; many of the massive apartment buildings have been abandoned and slowly crumbling since… well, something spoiler.

      Whenever I get the time for it I’ll add some more descriptive descriptions about the outside. Saying that there are alleyways and buildings doesn’t really invoke a sense of wonder, now that I think about it!

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