No. 11

I awoke in a dark tunnel, or is it a cave? The musty odor penetrates my nostrils and causes me to cover my face. My surroundings are blurred, but come into focus within a few moments. Where the hell am I? I remember seeing a bright purple flash and then??? nothing. How long was I out? How did I even get here?

I slowly stand to my feet. I smile as I notice that I have no serious injuries. At least none that I can feel. My naked body is covered in a thin layer of what appears to be??? y’know what, I don’t want to know. My eyes dilate to the surrounding blackness, I begin to recognize vague shapes??? a large dull rectangle stands before me with a small circle positioned near the left edge about half way up the height of the larger shape. I stare at it intently for a second or two before it hits me??? of course, it’s a door.

I clutch the knob and turn, only to be disappointed by the sudden clank of the deadbolt stopping my progress.

“Dammit!” I say to myself. I then think, “wait a minute??? caves don’t have doors! I must be in a room. But where is that musty smell coming from?” I palm the sides of the door to locate some kind of light switch.

No such luck.

I begin to peel the walls to at least gauge the size of the room I am in. I slide my hands along the wall, slowly??? slowly??? slowly??? this wall seems to go on forever. but, the that pungent musty odor doesn’t seem to leave, or at least lessen the further I creep along the wall. Is the smell following me? I stop. I listen.

“I don’t hear any other movement” I think to myself. I stand extremely still and shut off all of my other sense to concentrate solely on my auditory senses???

Nothing. Not a sound. I can’t even perceive air movement. I continue my journey. Slowly feeling the walls as I step ever so carefully onward. Suddenly, I reach a bump, and then the texture behind my hands change. The walls have gone from a rough cold stone, to a smooth wood. I feel all around this new texture and discover a metal sphere in my left hand??? I know that object. It’s a door knob!

“I’ve found another door,” I rejoice, “Maybe this one is open!” I quickly turn the knob.

Same as before. The deadbolt is securely in place.

I continue onward past the door and reach the stone wall once more. I steadily inch on, but now??? my senses are detecting something I hadn’t picked up before. With every step I take, my movement seems to angle at a very small degree inward. I didn’t pay attention at first, but now it becomes more prevalent with each new step. The walls??? are curved! I’m not walking in a single direction for a great amount of time. I stop and smack my forehead as soon as I realize my stupidity.

The room is a circle. No wonder the stink of whatever was fermenting in the room never left. I was only walking around it. I reached another door, and decided to see how many doors there were to this room. I found a small strip of cloth on the dingy floor and tied it around the door knob. I set back around the room and felt each door knob and kept the tally in my head. I left the door behind my right and when I reached the next door I counted??? only one door. There, firmly in my grasp, was the knot of cloth I had affixed there minutes before.

I turned around to face the center of the room, the obvious source of this foul stench. My eyes had ample time to adjust to the blackness, and now not only could I make out shapes, but I could also see contours within these shapes.

In the center of the room, lay a tremendous hoard of pulsating filth. A solid mass of??? something. It wasn’t moving closer or further from me, but it was??? breathing, or so it appeared to be. And, as if it noticed I was glaring at it, its odor came upon me like a heavy blanket, I was forced to vomit violently.

I regained my composure to stare intently at the massy expanse. I now had even more questions for my captors.

I could handle the fact that I may be prisoner, but to be incarcerated with this??? this thing? What was the purpose?

I slowly shrink back as I attempt to think through my situation, when I notice my tailbone. Protruding from the tip of my spine is a long muscular mass of sinew that now is beginning to pull, forcing me to follow. I look for the cord attached to my back and try to detach it, but it’s fully attached to my body, like another appendage. I feel another strong tug from the other end, and realize that this blob is recoiling me back to it.

“What the??? HEY! LET GO!” I shout at it, but the tugging transforms into a violent jerk that nearly breaks me in two. I fall to the ground, trying to grasp anything to slow my progress, but the floor is smooth, not far from linoleum. I scream.

“HELP! SOMEBODY HELP ME!” But I realize its futility as my echo rings back on me. There’s no one around. It’s just me and??? this thing. This thing that’s going to??? what is ti going to do to me?

Suddenly, a loud CHUG-CLUNK emanates from the door, and a blinding burst of light permeates through the now open door. A silhouette of someone stands in the doorway with some kind of weapon. I turn to finally gaze upon the beast that was in the room with me. I scream in cold terror at the mere sight of this viscous and fleshy mass that throbs and palpitates before me. The figure at the door then fires his weapon at the creature, who immediately recoils in pain and begins to drag me along with it. A second figure appears with a large blade and raises it high over his head at me.

SWAH-QUATNCH

The blade has severed the cord that connected my spine to the creature. The figures pull me to my feet and out of the room. The door slams behind us with a monstrous CLANG!

The figures release their grip and I collapse to the floor. As I compose myself, I take solace that the floor is clean, the air, light. I look up to see that there are more than two people standing over me, looking at me with curious wonderment.

“Are you OK, sir?” One offers me his hand.

“Yeah???” I inhale and exhale deeply, still attempting to make heads or tails of the matter. “I guess s??? wait??? Sir?”

“Please, let us get you cleaned up.” The men, which I’ve know come to realize are simply that, wearing heavy suits of leakproof rubber, lead me into a communal shower, where I remove my clothing and scrub off the sludge that I was covered in. It was black with blotches of red and pink and came off about as easy as maple syrup. It took me a fair amount of time to get completely clean, but when I was completed, I already felt much better than before. I wrapped myself up in a towel, and as I did, I couldn’t help but inspect my??? lack of a better term, “tail”.

It was thin, and stringy, like that of licorice, and even though it was attached to my skin, I could not feel it when I flipped it back and forth. The frayed end did not give me pain when I fiddled with them.

I stepped out of the shower and was escorted into a white room devoid of any other object, save the light fixture overhead. There, standing in the middle of the room were three of the men that rescued me.

“How are you feeling sir?”

“Why do you keep calling me sir?”

“Because, that is who you are??? sir.” The man then motioned to a portion of the wall that begin to slide back revealing a tube of white liquid and bubbling from the bottom, like a giant can of??? soda. I slowly walked to the tube and jumped back when I realized the container was occupied by???. me. Well, not me, a much older me. MUCH older. I spun back around, in just enough time to see some of the other men extracting the rest of my “tail” from my body with a swift SQUELCH. I looked at the first man.

“OK, what the FUCK is going on here? I demand answers, NOW!” The rest of the men, save the one in the middle scurried from the room like rats. The lone man stood firm and calmly answered.

“What is your name, sir?”

“What the FUCK kind of question is that?”

“What??? is your name?”

“My name? I’ll tell you my FUCKING name. My name is???” I was shocked to realize, I couldn’t remember my own name. I looked at the man in dire confusion.

“You’re name is Robert Jacob Walston. You were born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on October 15th, 1976, and you are currently the 56th President of the United States.”

“What?” I said in sheer disbelief. “Yeah, right.” I began to run around the room looking in every crack, crevasse and corner. “Where’s the candid camera, man?”

“This is not a,” The man clears his throat, “practical joke, sir. This is the year 2061.” I spin around after doing the math in my head.

“Wait??? wouldn’t that make me??? 85?” I quizzed the man.

“Precisely.”

“Then why do I look like I’m 25?”

“Because you are not 100% Robert Jacob Walston, sir. You are, in fact, 99% Robert Jacob Walston. You are a clone of Robert Jacob Walston.” I raised a quizzical eyebrow at the man.

“Get the fuck out???”

“In the year 2054, American scientists finally perfected the cloning technology that started with the sheep you may be familiar with, Dolly. Since then, we have mainstreamed the process and only offer it to those who severely need it, for example, yourself, sir.” I scratched my head, I couldn’t believe this. This must have been some kind of dream.

“So what was that thing that was trying to eat me back there?” I motioned to the other room, whereabouts I had no clue as to where it actually was.

“That ‘thing’ was your placenta, sir. Cloning is not much different from the actual process of birth. But instead of beginning your life cycle as an infant, you are stored within your placenta until you have reached the age that has been previously agreed upon. You develop and grow until you reach your birth age. Your birth is chemically enhanced, but because of hormonal tendencies of the placenta, it is sometimes reluctant to give up its birth, as it is not ready to breach.”

“And now what happens?”

“We will teach you all about your former self, so that you can proceed in your own footsteps and continue where you left off.”

“But what if I was an asshole? What if I don’t want to proceed where I left off? What if I want to do something different.” The man held up a device that resembled a small pistol.

“You do not have a choice in the matter.”

“Oh yeah?” I lunged toward the man and then suddenly??? There was a bright purple flash???.

I awoke in a dark tunnel, or is it a cave? The musty odor penetrates my nostrils and causes me to cover my face. My surroundings are blurred, but come into focus within a few moments. Where the hell am I? I remember seeing a bright purple flash and then??? nothing. How long was I out? How did I even get here?

Cloning Trial #012

We continue to attempt to clone the late President Walston, but each one of the clones act more like his younger more ambitious and ethical self, nothing like the man we wish to clone. To prevent a breach in security, each of the previous 11 clones have been vaporized.

Number 12 has just been born, we will monitor to see if his survival skills have improved from the last clone.

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