The words scrolled on the screen of Jake Prong's PDA.
Angus Mcungus switched it off, and grimaced in thought.
"But how did he write the bloody thing if he was dying?", he asked his soldier, who was standing next to his desk at calm attention and holding the gore drenched scimitar that had supposedly done the deed.
He paused as if to answer Angus, and then instead quickly raised the scimitar high overhead, and simply grumbled "hol' real still", and brought it down full force on Angus's scalp, splitting his head down to the neck like a ripe muskmelon.
The scimitar wielding Scotsman then proceeded to peel his face away like a mask to reveal a bony countenance (soaked with blood from the Scotsman's stolen face) with an intense pale blue, almost white eyed stare.
It was Jake Prong.
"As if your damned monkeys could get a drop on me, you stupid Scot bastid", Jake chuckled grimly.
Then, he proceeded to strip off the kilt, and put on his pants, wich he had hidden as a balled up wad between his legs under the kilt.
That being done, he switched on his PDA, and activated the custom program that set off the detonators for the C4 he had the foresight to place in key spots in the dimension generator at work.
Not out of any heroic instinct mind you, just for something to do.
Meanwhile, at the instant of detonation, the wormhole above the ruins of Johnny's donut shop snapped shut right in front of the dragon's face.
Needless to say, it was disappointed.
Meanwhile, Jake read the headlines on the PDA Google news about the fight between the android maid and the purple robot, the burning donut shops, the vanishing of the bigshot drunkard CEO Steve Torrent, and the dragon now over the city.
Jake put two and three and five together, and whispered loudly to himself "I bet there's some money in this!".
Two minutes later, Jake Prong's car hurtled down the interstate.
The special ordered custum built blue Knight Rider whooshing thing oscillated at full speed, and in rhythm to "space age love song", by A Flock Of Seagulls which was blaring on the CD player.
It was underway.
Flames roared up into the heavens.
The city was engulfed in a roiling biblical inferno.
There were only a handful of survivors.
Sadly, time was short for most of them.
The last of the fire crews fought valiantly until the dragon plucked the fire truck from the ground like a child's toy, and dropped it from 100 feet, crushing many of the firefighters.
Those that survived were quickly rinsed away by a belch of flame hot enough to weld with.
This was the scene that Jake came apon when he made his way into the outskirts of the city.
The dragon saw him immediately.
Jake wrenched the the car off to the left to barely avoid a fireball.
This sent him careening helplessly into a postal box, and a couple newspaper machines; he accelerated to have the momentum to plow through them and grit his teeth with determination as the crashing pinballed him around inside the cabin.
He regained control, and got back on the main road, just in time for the dragon to spitefully hurl a human being at him.
He slammed on his brakes, and tried to screech to a halt before he hit the person, but it was too late, he had only managed to slow down to 44 miles an hour when he felt the thump, and heard an ugly crackling of bones.
The car finally stopped as the body rolled a few yards away from the momentum of the strike.
Jake got a heavy lump in his gut.
He hurled the door open, and his feet hit the ground running.
He came up on the destroyed ball of human, and the lump got heavier.
He could make out from the proportions that it was a man.
He was wearing a flannel shirt, jeans, and workboots.
And worse, a rattling blood choked cough revealed that he was still alive.
Jake rolled him over to see his face.
Doing so jostled around the compounded bits that remained of his ribs, and made him scream like a baby.
Jake gulped, and tried to think of something to say, but in those precious instants, the man softly wailed out a girl's name, gurgled up thick opaque blood, and passed away like a blown out candle.
If he had been counting, or had even been listening to himself, Jake would have noticed that from the time the man was thrown at him, until this present moment, he had uttered the word "shit", in machine gun succession approximately 240 times.
If he had known to listen for it, he might have heard over the din of the flames the soft plaintive sobbing of an android from the mini-mall parking lot.
In that next startling second, Jake instinctively leapt out of the way as the roof and windshield of his car exploded inward from another human body being hurled in his direction like a baseball by the dragon.
This one was in what Jake interpreted to be a Jack Sparrow outfit.
Then, when we walked up closer, and saw it was Steve Torrent!
Jake poked at him to wake him "Mr. Torrent? Mr. torrent?".
Steve's eyes fluttered open, and the left one rolled around a bit until they snapped back to normal.
His memory visually struggled a bit until he finally furrowed his brow in surprised recognition.
"Ah! Jake..Prung is it?".
Jake breathed a faint chuckle and said "Close enough. How are you? Can you move?".
Steve mentally scanned the pains or lack of them throughout his body, and then said "um no, I don't feel anything from the waist down, plus I'm quite sure I'm all busted water balloons inside. The pain is quite incredible. I'm at a loss to describe it. I haven't got long I'm afraid", Steve explained in a detached, almost apologetic tone.
Jake frowned with sad resolve and asked "is there anything I can do sir?".
Steve thought for a second "you got any booze? That might take the teeniest edge off the molten hot razors in my guts and spine..or at least make me not care so much".
Jake rustled around in his glove compartment, and found several little liquor bottles he had swiped from hotels for the past few months, and emptied all their contents into an empty orange Crush bottle in the back seat.
"Here you go Mr. Torrent", Jake said reassuringly.
But, it was already too late, in that short amount of time, Steve had already passed out from the pain, and was well on his way towards dying.
Jake assumed he was dead already; and he was, for all intents and purposes.
Especially when in the next second, a blue fireball hit the car roof first, smelting it down to the doors, and cremating Steve instantly.
Jake started to run for it across the parking lot, and missed being hit by a third and final body that hit where he had been standing 2 seconds previously.
Once he made it to the safety of an alleyway, he was able to look back, and see that the body was a donut shop employee who whammed head first into the macadam, busting his skull like a pumpkin, killing him instantly.
Jake would have given almost anything to be fighting the mayor's creepy son over a matter of vanishing hookers and runaways.
A job like that would be sweet compared to this apocalyptic Bosch painting.
Just then, a seemingly frivolous thought floated across his consciousness.
"I wonder if Chez Labelle is burning up in all this".
And then, some mental puzzle pieces began to click together in his memory.
He quickly pulled out his PDA, and reread his journal entry about Chez Labelle and Lenny.
And then it hit him!
A possible way out of this whole damned mess!
Jake checked to see if the coast was clear, and then started running in the direction of Chez Labelle.
Ugh, it made him sick to even think the name.
He heard a whoosh overhead, and then an ominous rumbling gurgle, and his stomach sank.
He turned around, and there was the dragon.
It stood there on it's hind legs, it's forelegs/arms crossed, and what looked like a human sneer on it's lips.
Jake looked around, and knew there was nowhere he could run fast enough to get away.
He'd either not escape the first fireball, or barely escape, only to be cut down by the second one.
And that's if it belched out fireballs, and didn't opt instead for a continuous stream.
Jake's heart, stomach, and balls sank into his feet.
The dragon's chest began to swell, and it's mouth opened.
Jake's mind raced for an alternate plan other than the one he was about to use, and came up empty.
He was just going to have to bite the bullet and do it.
His brow and jaw set with determination as he went into deep, deep, deep concentration, and entered the the mental trance the volcano guru had tought him.
He imagined a hypercube, and began to will it to fold up.
Right on cue, the migraine started.
Then, he raced through the hyperpyramid, the hyperrhombus, and the hyperdodecahedron in turn, and the nosebleed started.
Once his mind became acclimated to being pushed up into the upper dimensions, it became a simple matter to mentally break his own body down into hyperpolygons, and begin to nudge his physical form into the new hyperdimensions his mind was aligned to.
He opened his eyes, and immediately regretted it.
His retinas were finger banged by a swirling kaleidoscope of ultra-violet and x-ray colors as arranged by Picasso smoking Pollock as a big human joint.
Jake closed his eyes, stifled his gorge with incredible force of will, and began to slowly and carefully sidle 2 inches to the right.
The dragon's head struck like a snake, and vomited forth a 7 second long fire hydrant gushing of flame.
It missed Jake by a mile.
The dragon blinked with confusion to see Jake standing totally unscathed in the middle of the huge scorch mark on the macadam.
In the midst of this confusion, Jake pulled all his remaining strength into a ball, and threw it as a hyperpunch.
Passing along the 4th dimension, his arm easily cleared the yards between him and the dragon, and his fist overcame the laws of perspective and grew in proportion to the dragon's eyeline.
Thus, an outside observer would have seen Jake's arm stretch across the parking lot at near bullet speed, and his fist inflate to the size of a Volkswagen and punch the dragon across the street sending him crashing through the bank.
Fortunately, there were no outside observers to see this, otherwise the observation would have determined the outcome, and thus prevented it by pressing too much normal reality in on Jake.
As it was, Jake had to fight the urge to pass out once he fell out of his hypertrance.
The inside of his head felt like a group of alcohol soaked porcupines were having an orgy, and he was drenched in sweat, and splattered with nosebleed.
He'd felt better.
He also had a slight pang of shame that he didn't finish his training with the volcano guru.
As much as he wanted to go to the drug store and steal some prescriptions and pour them down his throat like movie candy, he reminded himself that he had to get to Chez Labelles.
He had to consciously command his limbs to move for the whole remaining quarter mile there.
After awhile, Jake started to feel his second wind coming, and began to pick up his pace for the last six car lengths of distance across the parking lot to Chez Labelle's.
But just then, the last thing he needed to see and hear happened.
A rambunctious hooting crowd of drunken Frankenstiens, Draculas, Martians, and Gargoyles came leaping, skipping, and flailing out of the Macy's to his right obstructing his path.
He could tell by the very vibe of them, that they were about to give him some shit.
Jake let out a deep exasperated sigh, and pulled out his PDA and it's set of earphones, plugged the earphones onto the PDA, popped them into his ears, switched the PDA to MP3 mode, called up his playlist of fight songs, put the volume to maximum, and let Sammy Hagar's "winner takes it all", breath strength into his tortured brain and body.
Torbrigriago crawled from beneath the crumbled bricks and masonry, shook himself off, unfurled his wings, and exploded up into the sky with a flamed punctuated shriek of rage.
With his last ounce of strength, Jake exhaustedly bashed the last Gargoyle's head against the sidewalk, spilling it's brains, and then collapsed.
Torbrigriago caught sight of Jake amongst a splayed heap of corpses of Frankenstiens, Draculas, Martians, and Gargoyles.
He angled for the descent, and swooped in for the kill.
Jake's eyes fluttered open to see the dragon hurtling towards him.
He had nothing but a couple sparks of life left in him.
In one lame last pathetic effort, he imagined the hypercube, and just barely mentally folded it up about half way.
His eye fluttered open again, and then popped all the way open in shock.
The dragon just hung there, frozen in time.
Torbrigriago cleared the distance in seconds.
100 yards, 50 yards, 20 yards, and then at 10 yards away, Jake Prong vanished.
Torbrigriago's eyes bulged in shock, and he lost the split second he needed to pull up, thus crashing full speed into Macy's, tearing it open like a wet cardboard box.
After 5 minutes that felt like an hour, Torbrigriago managed to angrily wrestle free from the seemingly neverending avalanche of crumbling building materials, and back to the parking lot, only to see Jake Prong standing there calm and collected, with a superior smirk on his face, and holding a bottle of (obviously stolen) prescription pills in one hand, and a martian raygun in the other.
Torbrigriago huffed out a single methane laced laugh, and rumbled out in english "well played".
Jake deepened his smirk, bobbled his head, and said simply "I know".
Then, he fired.
Torbrigriago burnt away into a statue of charcoal like a cigarette being dragged on by a bellows.
"Well, there's that part done", grumbled Jake, who then proceeded to drink back another 5 Oxycontin, and then disappear.
Seconds later, he reappeared at the charred remains of the dimension reactor.
He emptied the last of the Oxy into his mouth, chewed it up, and gulped it down.
Then, he went into a very deep hypertrance, and saw all the time-slices of the dimension reactor at once, and honed in on the one that represented the moment of it's activation.
He then nudged his raygun wielding arm into the same timeframe, and fired.
Steve Torrent received a call saying that the dimensional device had mysteriously exploded, and that it would take several years to figure out what had happened.
"Oh well, screw it, scrap the project. I'll liquidate some assets to pay everyone's salary until they find a new job. The whole thing was a dumb idea anyway, there's got to be easier ways to be a pirate", he half grumbled half chuckled.
Then he hung up, and stared at the pirate hat sitting on his coffee table, and choked back some tears.
He gloomily decided to go out for a long drive.
Inevitably, he found himself in a donut shop.
Behind the counter were two scraggly looking gentlemen.
He looked at their nametags. The younger trainee was Phil, the older more haggared looking gentleman was called John.
Steve wasn't in the mood for anything fancy "you got any just plain?".
John frowned "just ran out, but if you want to wait, I can start up a batch".
"No thanks, I've..got to get to work", Steve mumbled, and with that, he left.
Steve drove along aimlessly for about an hour.
He was now in the country outskirts, well away from the awfulness of the city.
Just then, he saw something odd in the distance.
He slowed down to a rolling stop, and pulled up real close to make sure his eyes weren't deceiving him.
A girl was standing at attention on someone's lawn, calm as could be, and with a cardboard sign with "for sale", scrawled on it in black magic parker hanging around her neck by a length of clothesline. A small black suitcase hung from her left hand.
She was dressed in a maid outfit.
Not a "saucy", french maid outfit, a bit more conservative.
Her skin was as pale as a piece of computer hardware, and her hair was jet black, and came to a cheek length bob.
She reminded him of a young Kim Catrall.
His curiosity was piqued.
"So, why are you for sale?", he asked.
Sometime later, Lenny Sours pulled into a randomly chosen truckstop greasy spoon to use their bathroom while trying seemingly in vain to hold the rumbling gurgleing crap inside his lower intestine.
After just making it in time, and letting loose with a long satisfying water splashing 3 flusher of a crap, Lenny came out of the bathroom, and saw this interesting couple, and struck up a very interesting conversation with them.
Jake had been sitting at the center table of Chez Lebelle waiting for Lenny for over 45 minutes before he finally walked in.
And he had brought company with him!
"Sorry for the wait, traffic is a nightmare out there", Lenny said with an awkward grin.
"Funny, the roads were clear when I got here", Jake replied.
"Yeah, that is funny", he shrugged off in a way that Jake wasn't sure how to take.
Then Lenny introduced his new friends "this is Steve Torrent, and this is his lady friend Celine".
Jake gave them nods of acknowledgment while repeating their names in turn.
Just then, the waiter arrived.
He began to rattle off the specials, but 5 seconds in, Jake punched his lights out, and sent him spiraling over the table next to them.
Jake grinned innocently and asked "what?".
Soon, the food arrived, and this new guy Steve started prattling on about all these great adventures he supposedly had, while his girlfriend just sat there expressionless.
Just as Jake was about to ask her an inane question to politely pull her into the discussion, an orange flash of lighting lit the sky, and a huge black spaceship slid from behind the clouds.
Then, Lord Fulcrum appeared in a swirl of teleportation sparkles wielding a plasma rifle which he immediately turned on Steve, and fired, sending him hurtling back into the wall.
"Hands off my woman, Torrent!!", he barked in an almost drill sergeant tone.
Then, in the next second, Fulcrum fell dead from a well thrown fork to the eye, and into the brain.
Jake leaned over, and swiped himself a new fork from the next table which currently wasn't being used.
"Dammit, me and my friends are trying to have dinner over here", he muttered in casual irritation.
Steve got back into his seat, and dusted himself off.
"Good thing I wore my plasma proof girdle", he exclaimed without the least little hint of shame.
Celine just stared at Steve blankly.
Jake ate some bread.
Lenny shit himself.
Jake kept eating his bread.
Celine just kept staring.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
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