Wednesday, April 19, 2017

A World with No Children

I opened my eyes and found myself disconnected from the world, something woke me up. My head was consumed by a helmet. The device was heavy, cold and alien. One thick cord dangled from the ceiling like a chandelier that trailed down to my head. As I detached myself from the bulky machine, I came to find I sat alone in an empty gray room. Staring at the ceiling, I questioned; where am I? How did I get here? There were no windows to the outside. No pictures hung of distant relatives or of family vacations. Just solid gray concrete.
On the other end of the room, a thin line drew the exit. I stood to approach the long rectangular door sketched on the wall. There were no knobs to twist open or a button to press. I knocked thinking someone was on the other end. “Hello,” I called. More than once, I repeated the pattern with no response. I tried not to panic though my mind raced and my heart thumped. Surely someone would come for me. I knocked again, a bit louder. “My name is Thut Apple.” I pressed my hands against the wall. “Hello?!”
“My name is Thut.” I called to whoever lurked around, if anyone stood near. I kept quiet. I listened precariously but nothing came about. I leaned my other ear to the cement hoping it made a difference. “Hello?” Still, I called hoping someone would answer. My head rested on the cold gray concrete, I prayed for a miracle. The wall cracked the more pressure I applied, I noticed. With enough force the wall slid open to a dark desolated prison.
The building was cold, the air was thick, the lights were dim and no other souls were awake. Silence surrounded me in an unpleasant serenity. I stepped outside to find no one around. No one but rows of occupied rooms as far as I could see, with no way out. I leaned against the rails to find more levels descending and ascending into an abyss I did not want to be a part of. This was not my world. I was not where I was before I woke up in this nightmare.
Where did my country home vanish to? What happened to the family I came home to every night? My friends and co-workers whom I made plans with? Where’s the sun and the moon? The bright blue sky and the cotton clouds? Where’s the prickling grass and scent of bouquets? Where did all the life go? I began to race down the halls, screaming like some lunatic. “Is anyone there?” I called, frantically searching for an answer.
Thousands of sketched doors throughout the building told me I wasn’t alone. I made my way towards a door and slid it open. I bothered not to knock. There, an elderly man sat on the floor with the same devise I was hooked-in. His stillness felt abnormal and disturbing. He just sat there, breathing. He did nothing but age. Who built these machines? I questioned as I examined the man before me. They do nothing but suck the life out of us, I thought. We stopped living and ended up as nothing. We have come so far to go nowhere.
I wanted to unplug the devise from him. I wanted to know why I was disconnected but the helmet was locked on his neck. If I yank it from him he will die. “Sir,” I addressed him, “Can you hear me?” I shook him lightly, “Sir, wake up!” I shook and shook but he could not hear me, he never budged. He just sat there, unaware that I was there. I released him not knowing what to do. On occasion, he would laugh or sigh. Wherever he was, mentally, he seemed happy.
The exit to this maze I came to find myself in was my only priority. I stopped entering other people’s room, trying to wake them up, since they were all connected to some colossal computer. The same computer I was in before something woke me up. The deeper I entered the maze, the more I was haunted by the visions of the paradise I was deprived of. Finding a way out was my last salvation before I go mad. The questions that kept repeating in my head were turning me insane. I did not have the answers I desperately needed.
Finding the exit was not as simple as I hoped it would be. The exit must be somewhere, I looked around, There’s got to be one. I noticed there were no windows either even outside the rooms. No exits too, just endless hallways and levels of concrete. The lights were becoming dimmer the further I traveled. Something up ahead caught my attention. It sounded big and menacing. The ground trembled as the sound approached me.
The insidious thing stood feet away from where I was. There was nowhere to hide, unfortunately. Four red lasers scanned the halls while I peeked to see what lay ahead. The monster began to shoot darts at whoever it sought as a threat, me. I ran as fast as I could, afraid to look back. The creature spotted me and instantly came after me. I caught a glimpse of its spider like legs crawling all over the narrow hall.
It climbed the ceiling as it aimed its web for my feet. I did as best I could to escape from its grip. Its sticky web disappeared into pieces as the creature sped by leaving no trace of its presence. The big arachnid monster slipped over me as I tripped. Its needle pounced on me as I ran away. The creature spat its venom while I jumped the rails to the floor below. I swung, landing aimlessly to the level below the monster and continued running.
Cautiously, I slowly made my way down the hall. I peeked to see if there stood any danger but I couldn’t see a thing. The light was non existent where I had jumped to. A low whisper called to me in the dark as I stood there. It was calling me, inviting me to enter the darkness. Blindly, I followed the call. The walls were my only guide down the dark corridors. The further I walked the louder the whisper became until I realized they were not whispers.
The whispers that called to me in the dark were in fact the wind blowing through an opening. There, to my surprise, an exit marked the end of my travels. Light from the outside broke the darkness from my desolated imprisonment. I was relieved to have finally found the exit to my nightmare. I felt my sanity subside and my mind straighten. I felt ridiculous running around like some deranged manic. Screaming at the top of my lungs for some sign of life.
“Thank you.” I praised to whoever answered my prayers. Slowly, I made my way up the steep hill and soon stood face to face with the outside world. Though I was not where I was before I woke up, I only hoped I be reunited with the life I once thought I had. I dared not turn my back and face the other millions of people enslaved by the machines. One day, I convinced myself, they will rise. With enough force, I slid the door open.
I stood blinded for a moment as my eyes adjusted to the outside world. The grim daylight emitting from the clouds irritated my pale skin. The air reeked of death and the earth was covered in trash. I couldn’t believe my eyes. The millions upon thousands of towers as high as the clouds surrounded me. How did I get from living in a clean world to living in a world consumed by metal trash, I did not want to find out. The outside world was too much for me to process. My blood ran cold as my head spun. I felt nauseous and sick. The air was poisoning my lungs. My new home brought me to my knees.
“This is not my world.” I told the air, facing the ground. Bolts and springs cut at my knees as I knelt. My palms dug into glass beneath the plastic. “What is this place?” I yelled to the sky. “Take me back!” I plead to the heavens. “Connect me back to the world you yanked me out of.” I prayed, “Please!” The gray towers stared at me as I wept. The wind blew more toxins into my lungs. “What is this hell?”
Am I alone? Did I die in my sleep and now cursed to roam in some barren wasteland? Nothing made sense. I looked around to find some familiarity within the gray buildings but all I could remember was the world I had been disconnected from. “This isn’t real.” I said out loud, convincing myself otherwise. “This isn’t real.” I kept repeating as I crossed the empty streets. Wandering around, I came to find the only living creatures were the animals.
The animals had evolved into sophisticated beasts. They learned mankind’s habits and incorporated their intelligence to create their own kingdom. Giants called in the distant as predators stomped the grounds. The iron jungle sheltered wild apes, exotic birds, human like reptiles and colossal bugs, all running on oil. I followed the pavements, careful at every turn. Few birds flew by, their enormous wings blew dust as they passed. I was certain they were trying to blind me.
Off in the distant, a spot in the smog stood still. I paused for a moment, unsure what it was. The spot in the smog seemed to be hunched over, counting down the minutes before it made an attack. I picked up a metal can and threw it into the smog. A thunderous scream rang in my ear as the spot grew into a beast. I was on the run again, fearing for my life. The beast chased me relentlessly. The animals came for me as if I were an illegal immigrant trespassing in their property. I dared not look back to what chased me for hours.
I hid under a car, or what was left of the vehicle. I held my breath as its feet stomped beside me. The creature stood for a moment as it calculated my whereabouts. Lasers scanned the perimeter. The thing screamed once more before disappearing into the smog. I remained hidden, not knowing what other dangerous lurked near. As time went on, I felt myself grow weaker by the minute. The air was too polluted. Slowly, I emerged out from my hiding spot.
Careful not to draw attention to myself, I began to climb the mountain of trash. I wanted to get to higher ground, I wanted to see where I was. As I maneuvered my way up the mountain, the air was becoming more toxic. My eyes watered, my head spun and a piercing ring rang in my ear. There must be cleaner air once I reach the top, I kept telling myself. I was loosing hope and strength but I persevered. I had to, I must!
Once I reached the top, nothing but gray ancient towers consumed the landscape. Beasts and predators roared in the distance as if nothing was wrong. I violently coughed out blood that brought me terror. Am I dying? My vision was becoming blurry. The ringing grew louder and my lungs heavy from the pollution by all the toxins in the air. I was becoming numb to all the horror that surrounded me. Was I the last human roaming the earth? I questioned as I climbed back down.
I was back on the road, wandering in a daze of confusion. Crossing the street, I heard a machine flying about. It sounded heavy and old. I stood near a post and watched for signs in the smog. A giant saucers came into view as it levitated above me. Never had I witnessed heavy mechanics float like it’s weightless. It shined a beam towards the ground, searching. Hiding from the metallic giant was easy with all the trash laying around. I hid until I heard it levitate away. Its rusty engine echoed as it left. It soon disappeared within the smog.
I found myself entering what used to be a neighborhood. Visions from the world I came to know appeared again, reminding me of how life used to be. What looked like grass peaking out from the trash felt fake. There were no tress or playgrounds, just columns after columns of gray depressing ruins. There were no parks, cars, life; just piles of tall metal trash. I felt hopeless as my body began to deteriorate from the pollution. I was alone in a world with no children to make the world go round with happiness or hope. I was alone while everyone else were safe in their prisons, connected to the real world.
My knees fell on the artificial earth. My vision was growing dimmer. I could feel my heartbeat slow down while the ringing kept pounding in my ear; spreading into an unbearable migraine. I was dying in a world that had died a long time ago. I felt proud, in some way, to be the first to die. To know that I was the first to walk in this abandoned hell that once was held as a paradise. To lay eyes on this ghost town of hopelessness. As I took my last breath I laid flat on the ground and stared at the gray sky.

Monday, March 27, 2017


Cold settled heavy, the room melted into obscurity. Three masked figures stood around a fallen hero as he bleed. Two stood near, analytically examining his struggle for air, while the other blended in the background naturally. They bothered not to call paramedics or aid his injuries. They simply watched and waited for his last breath to come. Blood poured from the wound he received for challenging his authority, for defying his rights. A puddle encircled the blue velvet carpet where he lay.
Tall, bulky metal towers reached the atmosphere as they scattered across a city connected through bridges and roads. Electric cars routinely follow their destinations, spreading man to the farthest region. Trains blow in the air as they sped through the city, maneuvering around every monument and skyscraper. Sirens whirl in every corner. Beams dazzle about. When mischief is the law, what is justice?
Night concealed the truth as corruption worked its magic. Helicopters surrounded the city as they flashed their lights around, shedding light to all the injustice. Masked thieves, amateur thugs ran in packs as they took what they pleased. No one could prevent their organized manifestation. Sirens kept whirling in the air. Trouble loomed in every corner. One victim bleed to death as his murderers stood near. Trapped, agent Milestone calculated his odds as he mumbled underneath his breath.
“Is he dead yet?” Brother nagged, annoyed as ever.
“Patience.” Sister answered instead. “Moron.”
“Silence.” Mother proclaimed. “We are mourning two great loses.” Mother spoke underneath her mask. “Father has left us along with our gifted star. Act accordingly.” She turned to Sister then Brother. Brother joined them as they bid the spy goodbye. Milestone mumbled, slurred, taken for vulgar, something again but The Family did not care for what he had to say. They simply wanted him dead already. “Blessed be,” Mother finished as Milestone became silent. His death came no quicker.
Alone, surrounded by his killers, Milestone pondered over his escape. His last trick up his sleeve but he was trapped. Cornered into submission by the new order. He needed to get away, he needed to stay alive. Mother and Sister stood near, anticipating his final moments. They waited for death’s rattle but Milestone was determined to break through. He wasn’t about to let one mission be his down fall. The Family gathered as they felt his end begin.
Glass shattered behind them, a figure emerged from the pieces. The assailant threw a dagger straight to Sister’s chest. The dagger was dipped in poison, Sister had minutes to live. Brother fought back but was slayed by a deadly Taser. Whoever came to Milestone rescue was determined to leave with him alive. Mother had a decision to make, aid her daughter or guard the dying star. “What will it be, Mother?” the assailant asked.
Without hesitation, Mother stepped aside. She let her prey go to save her children as any mother would. The assailant took Milestone and jumped off the tower. They fell miles down, the air howled in their ear. “Stay with me!” She plead as she held him close. “You can’t die on us, we need you!” She tightened her grip hoping he do the same. Her rocket boots blasted them further down into the pavement. With enough momentum she leaned back. The maneuver elevated them above the city.
She patched Milestone’s open wound as best she could midair. Blood stopped leaking but was it enough to keep him conscious? They flew across skyscrapers and bridges. Entered tunnels, sped through open roads and dashed along the highway. Lights trailed behind as she and Milestone approached their haven. He needed medical attention, fast. Though he was injured, his will persevered.
“Almost there.” She informed him as the museum neared. “Keep fighting. Don’t let them win.” She straightened their stance, hoping to gain more speed. Her jet boots roared like thunder. They soared like a shooting star burning through the sky. “Stay with me.” She whispered to Milestone. He felt cold, lifeless. His pulse was weak and his face turned blue. “Stay with me.” He heard her say.
Preparations were in order. A new regime was in effect and they meant business. They, The Family, are far more organized than anyone could ever imagine. Far more than global manipulation, deeper than international espionage and greater than celestial domination. They are more than just a cult, better than any following and stronger than any movement history has ever recorded. They are the new age of modern law. They are power, they will us all.
With Father gone, Mother had all the ammunition she needed to gain control over The Senate. Under her reign, the world will be one. The Family, they call themselves, mastered the form of illusion. They grew their army by luring lost, forsaken, misguided troubled orphans and brainwashed them into joining their cause. For protection, for a luxurious future. Some were not persuaded, others took convincing.
With Father gone, Mother gained all of his assets; including the crown. The crown controlled Fathers abundant supply of puppets and the final weigh-in on votes. With the crown, Mother plans to unit every other secret cult there is and establish one omnipotent God. Father was the only one who stood in her way, but no more. Father was her red herring. Mother was the real threat. Everyone else were mere pawns.
As world leaders gathered for Father’s funeral, an opposing preparations were in motion. Hidden among the ruins of ancient history. Down the cellars of the city, buried under the museum, a team of justice warriors sat in a round table as they gathered intel on the terrorist. Their monitors projected data of their whereabouts. Phone records and audio recordings tracked their every thought. These modern warriors kept busy for the wicked never rest.
“They’re planning something big.” Pen stated as he took his seat. “So are we.” Others soon took to their positions. “Mother finally got rid of Father, like she said she would years ago. She tried taking one of our best soldiers too with intentions to weaken us but she did not succeed.” He paused, “Thankfully, we all are the best there is. Now that Mother has the world at her disposal, it is time for us to strike again.”
The group was alert, surrounded by the information they hacked stalking their target’s every move. Those praised by the masses as heroes they called terrorist for they knew better. “Once Mother collects her prize, all world leaders will be gathered in one place. There won’t be room for them to escape. Mother is putting them in a corner for us to take them down without her realizing it. She is handing us the win, we cannot lose.”
“I’ve talked to my insider.” Mona added. “He said they are on high alert and now that Mother is in control of the F.B.I., C.I.A., D.O.J., N.S.A., the Supreme Court and every other government branch there is, she will double the swat team and have them on grounds. As soon as we give the signal, my connect will inform the swat team to raid their meeting. They think they’ll be running drills as cover. Then, the whole world will know their dirty little secrets.” She handed them her report and the steps needed to pull of their scheme. “Sister wont be attending Father’s memorial, I made sure of that. Brother might but is he ever a threat?”
“I’ll have every media outlet on sight.” Tek followed. “I already gave my second eyes instructions. They’re all loaded with cameras connected to their live stream, ready to expose these aristocratic shit heads.” He handed the group records of the people attending the raid. “I’m personally recording each feed to my secure modem for added measures. I’m going to make a home movie about this. Who knows, it might get its own feature length reel.” He smirked, too high on excitement.
“Don’t get your hopes up.” Pen finished. “They started their rituals as scheduled.” A buzzer on their monitors notified. “Everyone get to your places.” He dismissed them. “Let’s make history people. Most of all, remember why we do this.” They took their things then exited their underground chambers. The warriors of justice, hackers of the free world, left the museum and headed straight to the lions den. They were on a mission for world peace. They were not alone and not afraid.
Pen, Mona and Tek stayed behind for last minute touch-ups. Pen noticed Mona seemed concern and knew why. Tek took his tablet from his backpack and checked on his patient. “What are we going to do about our decoy?” Tek asked, showing Pen his data. “He’s in no shape to walk. This was his idea, I told him not to go alone.” Mona came to Milestone’s defense. “Doesn’t matter, look how well that turned out for him.” He exhaled, “Who will take his place?”
“I’ll go.” Barron volunteered. “I’ve read the reports. I’m familiar with the plot. I know what to do.” Barron joined the three, trying to convince them of his worth. “I’ve been assisting for years now, I’ve helped with most successful missions. I can do this. I’ve studied the analogs, I’ve run the tests. I helped hack Sister’s power. I can do this.” Pen questioned whether he was up for the challenge. Tek and Mona were convinced.
As the sun vanished beyond the horizon, the moon appeared; stars and all. The air whispered, the earth cooled and the woods moved in the shadows of the night. Deep, hidden in the grooves of Bohemia, a team of rich noble heirs praise a symbol illuminated by the flames centered among them. They chant in a language ancient and wise. Masked by elegance, they call their God; mourning, celebrating.
Drums blaze in the night. Shamans, elders gather in a circle by the fire. Mesmerizing shades of smoke change color with every dust blown by the elders. Clouds grow as they expand from the fire lighting the darkness around them. Their shadows dance as they conjure sacred deities. Others prance around as they worship their immortal God, their maker. Father’s body burned in the fire, ushering the new Supreme.
A hollow statue levitated into view as their chants intensified. Inside, a man sat as the hollow statue hovered over the fire. The elders remained in their seats, their eyes rolled to the back of their heads. The rest encircled the elders as they danced around them, calling forth their all seeing God. The man inside the hollow statue waited for the beating drums to stop. He waited to give the signal.
“Let he be our sacrifice for a new beginning.” The new Supreme began, addressing Father’s death. Arms towards the heavens she praised, “Let he be an offering to please our mighty deity.” The crowd stood as they hummed, arms towards the sky. They stood to praise, to watch their offering be taken by the Gods hidden in the flames. The hollow statue made of hay burst opened as the man inside liberated himself from his cage.
“Blasphemy!” Barron yelled as he broke through the hollow statue. He climbed out of its chest and preached, “You all prize yourselves as untouchables. You take from others, you kill for your own good. You are not noble people, you are not fit for royalty. You are not civilized!” Barron looked around to masked faces. He did not see people but misguided children lost, yearning to be held.
“You hide behind your masks because you are ashamed of what you have become.” Barron looked at each of them. “Look at you, what God do you think you are praising? Realize you pray to no God but a devil in disguise! You think because your money buys you out of trouble, the world wont wake up to the lies you indoctrinate them into? Did you forget not everyone is on your side? Or have you forgotten about those you said no to?”
“Is that why you are here?” the Supreme questioned. “To seek your revenge?” She inched herself closer, examined the person above. “Because if you are, you and I have more in common than you’d like to think.”
“Don’t claim to know me, Mother.” Barron spat as he adjusted himself in the hay. “I know your angle. I know your moves. Nothing you can do or say will prevent the world from waking up to your dirty little secrets. With every revelation, it brings more people together to bring you and your cult down. Your Family may be untouchable but we are unstoppable. We have you surrounded, there is no where for you to hide or escape.” Barron cheered, “Checkmate, game over. You lose!”
“You and your hackers may have joined a league but once you play with the big boys you won’t stand a chance.” The Supreme stated. “Never forget, it is us who hold all the cards. We decide who wins. We hold all the power. We will you all.” She paused, “So go ahead, expose us. Reveal to the world who we already told them we are. Show the world what tellers you can be. Show the world what snitches do. Narc on us, see what happens then.”
“Funny you say that,” Barron laughed. “I too had a private consultation with your elders. You know, the people you report to. The ones who tell you what to do, what to think and what to say.” The occult members froze, discombobulated. “Yeah, them. They told me there are different names to call what we do. They said, enemies call it exposing. Others call it revealing but only the guilty, the weak, those who got caught call it narcing.” Everyone turned to the elders who sat near the fire. “So what is The Family guilty of?”
“Who caught you on the act?” Barron finished as he adjusted himself on top of the statue. “Or should I ask who are you trying to suppress from exposing your truth?” Barron took out a flag from his pocket and waved it in the night, hysterically grinning. He knew nothing they did would make a difference. They were all surrounded as he stated. The swat team guarding the perimeters made sure of that.
Minutes later, as planned, Pen gave the signal to execute their scheme of exposing the elite terrorist. The swat team raided Bohemian Groove with news reporters trailing behind. There was no where for the elite, the world leaders attending the secret ritual, to escape. The world came to find their officials were the real terrorist. They staged massacres to enslave the masses, to install fear among the community. Everyone in sight were charged with terrorism. Power shifted once again back to the people.
Officials were incarcerated, bloodlines were dethroned and laws were rewritten to meet the people’s needs; not just one percent of them. With the Bohemian Groove incident, every secret society known and unknown were labeled as terrorist and sought out to by the warriors of justice. Hackers saved the world by shedding light to all the injustice caused by the untouchables. No more would the world live under the invisible power of occult oppression. No more would the world witness another unsung hero fall to the deity.