“I need an expression, dammit!” Tom barked from the spotlit corner of the room where he was writing.
Teddi closed her eyes, placed a finger in the book she was reading, and shut it. Two heartbeats, she opened her eyes, “How about pi as expressed as a fraction over…” she never got to finish as Tom yelled.
“No, no, no, not a maths expression—” careful to not add the word ‘idiot‘ at the end of his rebuke. “I need something witty for my main character to say to his girlfriend.” His head bobbed over his keyboard as if the keys themselves would start typing.
Teddi chewed the inside of her lip. She knew it had been a mistake to let Tom have his ‘office‘ there, in the lounge not four feet away from the couch—her reading couch. Ever since he had ‘moved‘ in, putting his small computer desk against one wall, and setting up enough standing lights to illuminate the Eiffel Tower, she’s not had a moments peace to read uninterrupted. And woe betided her getting up to go to the kitchen, thereby disturbing his concentration. The filthy looks still unnerved her. Not sure who this man was, sitting in their lounge. She didn’t recognise him anymore.
BILLY RAY MELNIK (aged 13) of Pensacola, Florida, died today, March 6th, when his DNA register his final act of stupidity and terminated his existence under the Statute of Evolution regulations, section 7(a) para 1(b). Which states that, no entity can forthwith continue its existence if deemed to be in violation of watering down the Gene-Pool.
Termination occurred on the corner of 12th and Main, as, spray-cans in hand, Melnik engaged in the vandalous act of graffiti.
A bio-hazard clean-up crew for the city managed to collect enough of the gelatinous remains to fill a funerary pot. An interment service will be held Monday at the Pensacola City cemetery.
– END –
“Hi, my name is Finley,” she writes on the scrap of paper with a broken pencil Georgia gave her earlier. “You can blame Georgia for this, for what I am about to write, it was at her suggestion. Well, insistence, that I write it all down, how we came to this moment in time—” She pauses and looks out across the ink black darkness, straining to see anything moving, but sees nothing. It’s all gone quiet.
Too quiet, the incessant shelling having stopped a few hours earlier. No one knows what it means. Was it the proverbial calm before the storm, or maybe the eye of the storm? Did it matter which? The small pockets of resistance fighters, like her small group, were losing the war. She isn’t even sure what it is they are fighting for anymore.
Survival? That was a joke.
The lean and lanky Ryan Connor jumped out the back of the 4-ton truck and landed in the wet mud with a soft thud. It sucked at his wellies as he moved off toward a large pit, and the reason they were all there. He turned just in time to see his Corporal, Jack Blase, a man in his late 20s, man-handle himself out of the truck like a 60 year-old. Working bomb disposal did that to a person.
“Come on, Old Man, you’ll be late for the party.”
Jack flashed him a look that said, ‘don’t mess with me.’
Ryan cocked his head to one side, fixed his Service-issue woollen hat further back on his head at a jaunty angle, and grinned. He waited for Jack, William ‘The Bagman’ Herschel and their lieutenant, Sandy ‘Shingle’ House, to catch up with him. He turned back toward the gapping maw of the pit. Workers had been hand digging the area up until yesterday when, as happened all too often in this area of Hanover, a perfectly preserved and unexploded 1000 pounder had been unearthed.
It was one of theirs, that much was for sure. Someone had taken the time to write on the pointy end, ‘a gift from Ol’ Blighty’ in white letters.