Preamble: This the eighth chapter of a serialized science-fiction novellette concerning failures of fidelity in the transmission of culture. (Previously: Chapter 1, and Chapter 2, and Chapter 3, and Chapter 4, and Chapter 5, and Chapter 6, and Chapter 7)
by Cheeseburger Brown
PART I, Chapter 8.
Next time I comed to the anti-founderite camp it had growed a fence, and beside the fence was a line of skinny queers building a wall. They were working way fast even though nobody was whipping them.
I waved to the guards who would normally tell me to proceed but instead when I started to proceed they un-proceeded me gently, and telled me I wasn't going to meet the captain but instead going to meet some other kid. With my hands on my big fat belly I nodded. "As long as there's a place I can sit down," I sayed. "Babby has epic chi today."
I proceeded to a tent and then through the tent to a tent within the tent. I stopped proceeding there and waited there. It was a white place.
A girl comed in with a weird skinny queer. "Hello Jolly," sayed the girl in a very friendly way. "My name is Dr. Waterful. I'm going to give you a little examination today."
"No, about your body. I'm a physician. Do you know what that means?"
"Prolly that you member a lot of healing songs, and cut off growths when they go way weird."
She smiled. She still had all her milk teeth. "That's nearly right."
"You're like pretty much an anti-founderite equivalent of a douche."
"I'm not calling you untouchable, yo. Don't go jenky."
"Okay," she sayed, brow furrowed. "Now, the first thing I'm going to ask you to do is to undress."
I narrowed my eyes and hissed a bit, as a proper display of modesty. "Sex off," I telled her. "You won't be tricking me into porno."
We were eventually able to negotiate my nudity. I bit her once on the arm but not very hard, and afterward she forgived it. I maked her make the queer turn to face the wall. While he was looking away I whispered, "What's with your queer? He looks busted."
Dr. Waterful was focusing on a chirping thing in her hand. She looked up at me. "I'm sorry?"
"Your queer. He's all skinny and pale. Like a skeleton."
"He's not...queer, Jolly -- he's a reboot. Not only is he not busted, he's not even way alive."
I shrinked away. "It's a zombie?"
"No, an artifact. A mechanism, builded by peeps. To help."
Frowning, I took a step closer to the thing. "Builded?" I echoed. "Out of what?" The slave machine was gleaming and white, like polished bone. "The dead?"
Dr. Waterful shook her head. "He's made of metal. Now, can we proceed with the examination?"
I gathered up my clothes into my arms. "Oh, I mistinked we were proceeding anywhere. Where at now, yo?"
The doctor sighed. "Please sit on the table. Let's put your clothes aside. Don't worry. Everything will come back to you. Thank you, Damian. Jolly, can you take a deep breath for me?"
"All the way in, and -- all the way out. That's good."
"Why are you so shiny?"
"Anti-founderites sweat a lot."
She looked down at her hand. "This? I faith you're seeing my membrane. I guess it does glisten a bit in the light."
"What's a membrane?"
"It keeps my germs and your germs separate. And your parasites. And the bugs in your hair."
"It's some kind of cootie barrier?"
"The captain was right about you. You're quick. That's exactly right."
"So you can touch untouchables without touching them. Amazing. You won't even have to shower or purge your insides after being with me."
"It's not cause you're untouchable. It's cause my -- cooties and your cooties have different histories. My body isn't used to the cooties around here."
"It would freak out?"
"I dig. Your body is weak. You're prolly infertile. That's normal. I hope you're not too jealies just cause I has formed babby. My family has a proud tradition of douchebaggery. Our sex ovens are big-ass strong."
Dr. Waterful nodded. "Truthfully I am very interested in your pregnancy, Jolly. But don't worry. I'm not jealous. I just want to learn more about your babby."
I rubbed my tummy. "She's half-way baked. Then she'll come out and you can ask her anything you want. But I feel I should warn you: verily, babbies normally don't answer questions. They just yell."
"I only want to look."
"You can way look, but be careful of the soft spot on the head. You can fuck babby up if you put your finger in there."
"We don't have to wait, Jolly. We have ways to see inside of you. In fact, I'm looking at your babby right now."
"Inside my eyes. You're right that she's a girl. And she's gorgeous. She's a gorgeous little girl, Jolly."
For some reason my emotions goed all mental a bit and I cried. "She's not weird at all? Even a little? Truth, you can say it. I can hear that. I can take it. Extra fingers? Half a face? Hairy tail?"
And suddenly the wall turned into a picture and the picture was a wet little big fat baby all curled up and sucking her thumb and lazily kicking one foot in time to the thumps I feeled inside my sex oven. It was a picture from inside my body, as if there was eyes that couldn't see skin, and we lived inside of its tink, seeing what it saw.
"Causation Prime!" I yelled.
Damian the reboot escorted me to the library tent, and as we comed to it I saw that it was a way little tent and not a big fat one. How could it hold more books than I could imagine? Once again it seemed that Captain Gateway was a pretty confused kid, or possibly a liar.
Inside the tent was a comfy chair in front of a window. Through the window it was nighty -- just black and the swimming reflections of Damian and me. We standed there.
"How is this books?" I asked.
"Madam, this terminal provides access to all libraries and archived feeds. I have been instructed to introduce you to the interface, and to recommend readings which may be of interest."
"And then somebody puts the books on the window so I can see it? How do they tink when to roll the page? Is there more metal queers back there?"
"Madam, please sit. I will engage a tutorial."
Verily was I skull-banged by the wonders of this miraculous apparatus! An infinitude of factualities, an ocean of tinkeries, a cosmic space of weird faiths and phantasmagoria both profound and profane -- I was left reeling and double-derpy with dizziness. For reals this was the douchiest treasure of all treasures. I was blessed. I feeled the magical exhaust of Causation Prime fuming between every line and it breathed right into my heart.
Woman, thy name is douche. I feeled whole and replete with purpose and shit.
"What impressed you the most?" asked Captain Gateway.
"My saying is busted," I telled him. "I always prided myself on my command of Classical English, but verily now I tink well how derpfully I deploy it. Lo, I shall have to go back and fix up my reports."
"Is that what you're always scratching away at? Your reports? You're capturing our conversatings? I faithed you was drawing."
"What's the difference between writing and drawing?"
"You'll see. You'll come to see, when you hack more."
I hesitated, licking my lips.
The captain frowned. "You do want to hack more, don't you?"
"Yes. Of course. I am a douche-bag. Tinkery fulfills me."
"So what's wrong?"
I petted my tummy. "I worry babby will get empoisoned. What if the new tinkeries come to her through my blood? What if I take on too much, and overwhelm her, and she gets all busted?"
"Tinkery isn't bad for you. It's is a tool. For advancement."
"A knife is a tool, too, captain, but also a weapon. All stuff has a dark aspect."
"I don't faith there's not any such thing as too much tinkery."
"No, of course not. It's not your place to worry about that. You're an anti-founderite. Balance is beyond your grasp. But I am a joint between worlds, and I must tinkfully consider every turn lest too much torque bust everything. I have my peeps to consider. What good am I to them if I go totally mental?"
"I don't tink your peeps worry about you the way you worry about them."
"That's normal. I have my place, they have theirs. Verily shit must be way fucked up on your world if you can't even tink well that. Does no one take responsibility? Do babbies raise themselves?"
I had angers for the captain all the way home. He was such a malarker, but acted if as if was the douchiest douche in the world -- full of bookish tinkery but without any of the humility of the part. Why didn't his gods censure him? Why did Causality Prime stand by, doing nothing while the outlanders sinned so big and fat and shamelessly? Should not the call come from on high for the piously inerrant to transform into their pure essences and roll out?
There were a lot of peeps gathered around my laboratorium. They greeted me with enthusiasm, hoisting me up on their shoulders and singing. They ferried me to the inner courtyard where my stuff had been smashed up and piled up into a big-ass pile. In the middle of the pile was a tall and study wood stake. The peeps carried me up to the top of the pile and ripped off my clothes and tied me to the stake.
A bishop in a very tall hat speeched with a long incantation and quoted from the findings of the founders. The mayor of mayors stood behind him, but he would not meet my eye. His face was pale and he looked all busted, like he was going to puke.
"And youse the peeps rose up, youse did, and seized from Seizer the spoils of his debauch, and inverted the cars of Seizer so that their bellies could burn, and the streets runned as rivers with the blood of wizards and those after their kind, and the blood of bastards and those after their kind, and across the face of every house of perversion were hanged banners of emoji uncompromising, the factuals holy."
I was sad because I'd wanted babby to come out before this happened, but babby wasn't ready to leave my sex oven yet. Babby would burn with me. So at least we would both be purified to cross over. I would hold her in Heaven, and she could drink as much milk as she wanted. In Heaven your tits never run dry.
"Thou art kick-banned from the world, as those in league with Darkwins was they kick-banned before you, to clean our pool of toxins, and flush it with fire."
At the bishop's signal a whip-striped queer sprinted across the courtyard and put a torch to my pile. Smoke curled around my toes. I sighed.