Five: Episode Fifty-Nine is based off the following book excerpt from my science fiction, supernatural, thriller, The Contingency Generation.
I’m a counterfeit corpse in a module stack of three, and I can’t see much. All I hear are the sounds of workers’ greetings and Flash’s occasional shout of caution as he maneuvers my hiding place.
I’ve never entered the back door of the Abide like a thief. With my job, I always pass through the front doors.
Claustrophobia presses in. I fight the urge to kick my way out of the module, and instead I resign myself to being rolled about like freight cargo. For distraction, I think about Flash and his many disguises, including the masquerade of the moment, his posing as a transport worker.
Then my anxious thoughts turn to focus on my plan.
What are my true options?
There’s still time to ditch my new life of crime and blend into Fol’s plan for me.
But a small island of sanity reminds me that when truth appears, it’s impossible to live again with a lie.
Fol is not who I thought he was, and he never has been.
I used to care if Fol loved me, but if I stick to the truth of the matter, I know this hope is nothing but an empty wish for the impossible.
Fol only wants to control me.
Our partnership is a sham. We partnered because I liked how he was well connected and the perception he gave that I was important to him, but none of that value turned out to contain shades of love or him wanting what is good for me.
Fol doesn’t have the capacity to extend self-less love or good to another. He never has, and he never will. All he does with life is try to control and manipulate it, and my life is no different to him.
I thought his heartlessness was a mirage of his power. I thought he would change. But now I know that my safety exists only if I stay with him and serve as his pawn to expand his power to include the most magnificent provision—life after death.
But I can’t.
If life after death already exists, then all our efforts are counterfeit.
. . . . . . . .
Flash helps me stand and step clear of the module. In the darkness I hear his voice call out directions.
“Step carefully about ten paces forward.”
I feel his grip on my arm guiding me.
“Can heralds see in the dark?”
Flash chuckles. “Yes. The darkness is as light to us.”
“At least I can’t see your ugly Jack suit.”
“I thought you found Fol good-looking?”
“Haven’t you ever heard the expression that good-looking is as good-looking does?”
“I’ve not heard that, but it seems to be quite true.”
“It is. No matter what he looks like, his deception and manipulation against me makes him repulsive to me.”
Flash says nothing, but I feel his hand lift mine and place it on a metal support of some kind.“Here’s the railing. I’m not sure the door at the lower level has a chip sensor, but that is our goal. It will be about fifteen steps to a half landing then a turnabout and another fifteen steps before the door. It will get lighter as we go.”
“And the other bodies in the module? They’ll just stay here?”
“Don’t worry your little head about that, doc. I’ll be back for them and deliver them straight to the processing room. But now, we’ve got to hurry to get you to Balls. He’s already started working the database.”
I hesitate to move.
“You gonna go down, doc?”
I nod, wishing there was another way to counter a counterfeiter, but for now, my brief stint in a life of crime will have to do.
This blog post is an excerpt from my supernatural thriller, Five, presented in rough draft version. The posts appear weekly as my story development progresses. The story snippets will likely be full of typos, garbage, and confusion. I’m sure to regret allowing readers a sneak peak of the chaos involved in this process of making a finished book.
Someday, if I still have an audience, my book(s) and screenplays will be polished and for sale. Until then, my story snippets are free, but payment by “subscribing” with your email would be a nice gesture. For doing this you might get a discount on my purchasable work should that day ever arrive. All you get now is a notice via email of a new story episode that I have ready to read on my “blog.” I don’t sell my email list or do anything else with it.
Why am I doing this stupid and terrible thing—letting readers see my “off the cuff” story writing?
Book industry experts say that in today’s world of book marketing, an unknown author must build their own sales platform. I’m supposed to advance my platform by collecting readers, and for now, by blogging. Since I can’t imagine blogging about what I had for breakfast or the things my cat does, then instead, I’m blogging fiction excerpts of my work(s) in progress.
Thanks for slogging along. Maybe we’ll meet on a bookshelf someday.