Archives for posts with tag: science non-fiction

You really, really gotta read the rest of this piece here. And I’m not pretending like it’s real any more: not that you were convinced any more, but really…gotta distance my real actions from this insanity.

After Jenny and I finished I felt myself becoming more and more acclimated to the Cthulhu slug world. My body and mind began accepting what I was instead of instantly rebelling at the disgusting premise of my existence.

“Hey! Guys! Wake up!”

I open my eyes in the “real” world as Pooh stands over us: his swords and guns are gone and he looks frightened.

“Finally!” he says looking at me and then looking at Jenny. She lies prone on the ground next to me, eyes closed, looking as if she is sleeping peacefully. She smiles as her eyes open. She sees Pooh and frowns.

“What the fuck?” she said. “I was just getting used to that…”

“Used to what?” says Pooh.

“Nothing, nothing,” I say shooting Jenny a sharp look. She turns white, red, blue, green and several shades of purple. I assume my face does the same as it burns with a weird fury.

“Tell me!” says Pooh imploringly, almost whining. My eyes adjust to the new light, the real light and I see we’re in a small cell of some type. There are no cell bars but only a large metal door about six foot high. The room itself is no more than eight feet tall and is made out of pure, shiny metal with no obvious rivets or connection points.

“What? Where are we?” I say.

“You two…you slept through it! I had to see…it. Lucky I am so strong or else I might be…not so well up here,” says Pooh, tapping his head. I note a distinctly manic look in his eye that wasn’t there before: the look of a deer in the headlights.

Or a raccoon in a bear trap.

I walk along the edge of the room, running my hand along the side. It’s warm to the touch, not cool as I’d anticipated. Jenny is still lying on her back, seemingly trying to get back to sleep but groaning in annoyance at her inability to do so.

Pooh sits crouched in one corner (I move my hand around my to avoid his head) mumbling Russian in a distracted tone. After walking all along the edge, I walk back over to Pooh. I look down at him and he looks up at me.

“What?” he says.

“How long have we been out?”

“Impossible to tell. They drop food off here three, four times. Could be a day. Could be four. I have talked to nobody. Thought you were dead. Thought I would be next.”

I looked down at Pooh and realized that he could no longer (at the moment) serve as the leader of our group. He was shaking badly, distractedly, mumbling and jerking. He wasn’t exactly “crazy” but was obviously feeling nervous about something he had seen or experienced. Being alone for who knows couldn’t have contributed to his ease of mind.

In the void of a leader, of an alpha, somebody must step up to take charge and lead any group. Looks like it was my turn to try that out: something I’d rarely, if ever had to do in my life, let alone on the weird, totally fucked scale of whatever was going on here.

First, I had to have some answers about where we were and what was going on.

“Pooh…you have to tell me what happened while we were out.”

He stands up and runs away from me and into another corner.

“Noooo!” he screams as he runs. This will not do. I turn and watch him crouch in another corner, with his hands over his head. He’s crying.

“Pooh. You have to tell us what happened if we have any chance of getting out of here alive!” I shouted perhaps a bit too much as I watch him jump with each word I say.

“Nooo! I cannot say the things I saw. They are not good.”

“You have to say!” I scream, hearing a harsh bounce back against the walls. It makes me jump as I realize how loud I’m screaming. Pooh starts sobbing and I realize I’ve pushed him too far too quickly. He’s blubbering and shaking and speaking in Russian quickly and incomprehensibly.

Then again, any Russian is incomprehensible to me, sadly.

I turn to look at Jenny for help: she stares at the ceiling, concentrating as if she is looking through the floor. I walk over to her and lay down, side to side and stare at the ceiling.

“What’s up?” she says.

“I dunno. What you looking at?”

“Uh, the ceiling.”

I laugh.

“Yeah but why?”

“Why not?”

She seems rather tense and obviously distracted. Upset. Perhaps afraid.

“Are you okay?” I say.

“No. I’m not.”

“What’s the matter?”

She sighs heavily before speaking.

“It’s really hard to talk about. I don’t think I can just yet.”

A sudden realization hits me.

“Did you dream while you were sleeping?”

She doesn’t speak.

“Because I did.”

Now, she turns and looks at me. Her eyes widen.

“Yeah?” she says. “About what?”

“Did you dream too?” I say.

She pauses a moment and breathes in deeply.


“About what?”


“Nope?” I ask.

“Not gonna talk about that. Not yet. Besides,” she says, trailing off a little, “I think you already know.”

I nod look at her and realize she wasn’t looking at me as I nodded but staring straight up at the ceiling again.

“Gotcha,” I say. “I would rather not talk about it either.”

“Good,” she said. “Maybe we never will.”

I say nothing but stand up and walk towards the door. Its featureless. I press my ear against it and strain to hear something, anything. I hear footsteps so I jump back several feet and stare at the door. It opens up.

One of the gremlins stands there, holding a torch. It suddenly hits me that the entire cell is light by a weird glow that I can’t identify: no torches or light sources are obvious.

The gremlin points at me and two more gremlins come out and drag me out of the room, slamming the door behind them. It happens so quickly, Jenny and Pooh have no time to react. I’m dragged down a seemingly endless hallway between two gremlins. I let my body go limp and fall back asleep.


Confused? Obviously you didn’t read part 9 or any of the rest of this masterpiece of non-fiction. Go do that then come back here.

The three of us laid back and relaxed as these strange, groping yet quite friendly creatures dragged us deeper and deeper into the lighted chamber. I lightly lifted my head with a grin and saw something huge and writhing just inside the door but trying to consider it, even for a moment was difficult: it was too big and too potentially freakish to register properly.

“God damn, this is just like…getting high,” said Jenny as she giggled. “Maybe heroin. I did that one time.”

“No good,” said Pooh.

“I know,” she said.

As we got closer, I felt the creatures begin a series of dark, guttural chants that were in some elder language I had never heard. Certainly, it was nothing Romantic, Germanic or Asian as the syllables formed no familiar sounds or ideas that I could recognize. The chanting grew and grew as they moved us over their heads. The nearer we got, the more intense the chanting: it got to the point where I honestly felt like they were holding us in the air through the power of their chants.

That, of course, is ridiculous.

I looked through the door again and caught glimpse of what awaited us: a series of pillars that stretched as far as the eye could see and past: fires, burning through holes in the floor like in some damn bad fantasy movie; creatures moving in poses and postures that suggested some type of rhyme and reason and even more so a basic sense of worship; and again, the large, large mass of writhing tentacles that ate at my mind but which I couldn’t fully process.

“What is that thing?” I said to Jenny, pointing one arm lackadaisically towards the creature.

She looked for a moment and I registered, for the first time, fear. It gradually faded away.

“Fuck…I have no idea. It looks like…cthulu.”

“That’s what I was thinking,” I said.

“Ca…hulu?” said Pooh.

I laughed at his mispronunciation then felt bad for laughing: liberal guilt trip kicking in. I ignored it.

“There was a writer…H.P. Lovecraft. Horror. He wrote about things like this: ancient creatures that slumbered for centuries, the sight of which would drive you mad…and how they waited to crash into our realm and destroy us without thought, rhyme or reason.”

“Sounds dumb,” said Pooh, “or rather like a typical day of driving in Moscow.”

Both Jenny and I laughed but Pooh looked rather grim.

“I do not kid: it is awful to drive there,” he said.

We grew quiet as the chanting began to get overpowering. I felt fear struggling to form but always, always it was smoothed over by a feeling of simple bliss or happiness. A realization hit me hard, too hard to be ignored: this bliss came with the touch of the creatures and had no disappeared as we rode their heads.

Clearly, they were causing us to have these feelings. I’d already come to that conclusion (hadn’t I?) but maybe it had a reason…maybe it was needed to stop us from…going crazy with fear. It became harder and harder for me to concentrate so I laid back, closed my eyes and listened to the chanting of the creatures as they slowly, slowly carried us.

In the darkness of my eyelids, my mind cleared a little more and I could focus on the situation. The chanting made it hard to focus, though and I kept drifting, drifting to a different place, a different idea and situation over and over again. Somehow, it seemed impossible to consider myself in any danger when such light creatures danced on my eyes.

No, not the eye dancers that come when you close your eyes. This was different: it wasn’t the vague, slithering shapes of the weird creatures that live in our eyes. Instead, it was fully formed visions of creatures I had never seen and felt I would never see, moving to and fro in strange, rhythmless motions. They danced intensely and whole scenes began unfolding in my mind: vast fields of gray grass with a full lit sun filled sky.

Somehow, the sunlight made it more frightening than if it had been in the dark: these creatures, with limbs, tentacles, mouths and oddly proportioned body sections moved and slimed in the reality of the sun. They were in my eyes, in full resolution and completely lit and the idea of these creatures existing in the sunlight gave them more reality than if they had been confided to the darkest corners of the world.

After all, you can pull the cover over your head at night when the monsters creep around your bed and stare at you, waiting for a single portion of human skin to pop out so that they can rightfully devour you. However, in the full glare of the midday sun, no blanket can protect you from the tearing claws of the fitfully damned.

I realized suddenly that one of the creatures in the writhing masses looked familiar: I won’t beat around the bush for suspense. It was me. And there, next to it was Jenny, as a Cthulu spawn, writing in the grass, looking to rut with whatever male creature came her way. Wait, male? Female? These creatures were neither but were both. Pooh was nowhere to be seen.

My perception shifted, moved and glided through the darkness of my mind and I begin to see myself through the eyes of that creature. Oh no, this was no good. I fought hard, hard to bring my perception back to my normal sense, where I could hear the chanting growing louder yet fading in my mind, the touch of the creatures disappearing as I felt the grass beneath my…body and the sun on my…body.

It was no good. I was shifting totally into the body of this creature without fail. I couldn’t stop it. I turned to the Jenny creature and searched for her eyes. There they were…just above her rows of razor sharp teeth. It grunted at me incoherently and I grunted back. Slowly, the grunting language became clearer to me and I understood what it was saying.

“What the fuck? Where the fuck are we?” it said.

I said nothing but felt various pores of my body evacuate a thick, viscous ooze. At first, I thought I was defecating but as my understanding of my new body started to take over I realized I was actually…horny. The ooze was a pre-mating ritual intended for Jenny.

“Eww…”she said as she moved closer. “I…want to eat that.” She began oozing her own strange liquid which I suddenly wanted to eat with an intensity that disgusted and fascinated me. We both bent down to eat each other’s respective slimes as strange body functions I was unaware I possessed began activating, getting me ready to mate. We moved closer until we touched and it began.

For the exciting lead up to this eye popping battle, you should check out part eight of the story here. And remember: this actually happened.

Pooh immediately runs into the room swinging both of his swords quickly and accurately: limbs are shed from all manners of creatures as they scream in agony. They pivot towards Pooh who runs up and down pillars, nearly parallel to the ground, slicing, dicing and ripping his enemies to shreds.

“Kick ass,” said Jenny.

I watch grimly aware that I have no fighting skills and I assume Jenny doesn’t either. However, she surprises me by pulling two six inch blades out of her purse and assuming a fighting pose.

“Follow me,” she said. “I’ll mop up what he missed and we might be able to get out.” She immediately runs and I follow, knowing full well to stay in place is to die.

But damn if I ain’t out of shape! My feet and ankle starts to feel bad first: my stamina, it’s still reasonably okay.

The trail of blood was already quickly growing behind Pooh. He didn’t leave many stragglers in his straight line and those that stood to the left and right of it stood momentarily stunned as we ran by: Jenny would swipe at any who lunged with a speed I wouldn’t have expected from her. I could feel the creatures, the wave of creatures, closing behind me as we ran and pausing a few moments before coming straight at us again.

I felt completely helpless in a way I had never felt: I could hear the monsters roar behind us, smell the stench of their hides and bodies and practically feel their hands touching me. Once, I swear I felt fingers clutching at my shirt put a burst of speed quickly made that fear a thing of the past.

Singing ahead of us, Pooh continued to cut. He sang in a harsh, rough Russian voice that I couldn’t understand.

“He’s singing about snacks,” said Jenny with no expression in her voice. She sliced the throat of a lunging ghoul who clutched the wound as gray blood poured over his fingers.

I smelt smoke, burning and heard screaming. Somebody had set fire to…something but I couldn’t see where or who it could possibly be. I stayed as close to Jenny as I could and she stayed as close to Pooh as possible but it was getting harder and harder to keep up for both of us (me due to stamina and her due to Pooh’s stamina which was endless).

Gradually, we seemed to get further and further from Pooh who continued to swing and cut and scream with endless passion. Jenny started to pant heavily (one cannot smoke so much without some damage) and my body ached. I could hardly keep up with her any more and the monsters began to get closer and closer.

I had to throw punches and kicks to get through them now: their fear of us was growing smaller and smaller by the moment: they touched me and their hands were clammy, cold but not slimy as I had expected. I pulled away from their grasp in revulsion.

At some point I realized they weren’t pulling at us or trying to hurt us: they would grab us and touch us but I hadn’t been directly attacked by any of them. I took a good look into the eyes of one of them and realized why: there wasn’t much there. These great creatures were essentially mindless drones that barely seemed to exist.

I touched Jenny on the shoulder as she sliced through the creatures and whispered “stop.”

“Are you crazy?” she said tearing into another creature.

“Just let them be. Watch what happens.”

She stopped cutting the creatures and closed her eyes, anticipating the end. I wasn’t sure why it took so little to convince her to stop: perhaps she was simply tired and knew we were nowhere near out of there (I figured we were a little under halfway through the huge room through which Robocop had led us) and simply figured it was her time to go.

I watched the creatures as they grabbed at our arms, legs, backs and various other parts of our body. They didn’t rip or tear: they simply touched us as if the simple act of touching was all they really wanted. Up ahead I heard Pooh shouting and screaming and noted not one of the creatures screamed as he cut them into ribbons.

“Pooh!” I shouted, trying to get his attention. I could not see him any more but simply saw the limbs and heads flying through the air. Blood spurted out of various necks and limb stumps in a gory festival that would be amusing to me if I saw it in a movie but which was beginning to turn my stomach watching it unfold in real time.

“Damn it! Pooh!” Jenny shouted as the creatures pawed us. They actually parted as we walked towards Pooh, giving us room to walk.

I began to wonder if the screams and howls I had heard had been imagined when a creature touched me and howled as if he was on fire: I turned to look but he was smiling. They were howls and screams of joy and happiness not of rage or anger.

It was in all honesty beginning to become unbearable seeing these poor dolts tore to shreds by the master Pooh and I wished heavily he would stop.

Suddenly, the creatures picked us up and held us over their heads. They moved so quickly we had no time to scream out loud or defend ourselves. They began moving us over their heads in the direction we wanted to go. How convenient yet terrifying.

That was when I saw they had Pooh. He was relaxed now and no longer cutting. I slowly felt all tension leave my body as we moved closer and closer to Pooh. When we were right next to him, I felt as if nothing was more natural than where I was at the moment.

Which didn’t seem right to me.

“Something in these guys…” said Pooh. “Relaxing me. Calming me down.”

“Me too,” said Jenny.

“They are taking us…someplace…I hope it is for the best…”

A large door opened up on the far wall: in fact, the door was the wall. A bright light shone through as the creatures slowly and silently moved us towards the door. I was quite happy to let them do it.

Read the previous entry here.

I grabbed Jenny’s hand and ran for cover: she pulled away, running in a different direction and hid behind a large stone pillar that was wide enough to hide her and myself. I ducked behind a much smaller pillar that could barely hide me as I felt bullets fly between us. I heard screams and shouts as I briefly covered my head and emitted my own scream.

I heard gurgling sounds and turned to look at the source: Winnie the Pooh’s teddy bear women were flinging themselves at Winnie Pooh to stand between their lover and the gun and were being mercilessly gunned down. Winnie the Pooh moved, seemingly in slow motion by flipping his bed over, covering himself with it and moving forward as quickly as possible. Which given the circumstances was simply not fast enough.

Robocop moved towards Winnie Pooh who pulled a grenade from his belt, pulled the pin, held the grenade (I watched him count “one, two”) and then threw it, timing it perfectly: it exploded just in front of Robocop, knocking him back and blowing limbs off his robotic body. The acrobats performing above plummeted to the ground as they lost their concentration. They splatted roughly against the floor.

Winnie Pooh moved towards the slowly moving bed and kicked it over. Winnie THE Pooh stared up at him, eyes still glass from the “honey” running through his veins.

“Cousin…” he said, paws held up.

“No cousin,” said his Russian counterpart, pumping him full of lead. Stuffing, limbs and “fluff” flew through the air, signaling the end of Winnie The Pooh.

Russian Pooh stopped shooting and the room exploded into silence. I turned and looked at Jenny: she furiously puffed on a cigarette and shook her head, peeking over at the dead body of Pooh and then back up at his assassin. I could practically hear the gears turning in her head.

“You people!” shouted Pooh, “I have rescue you! Come come!”

It took me a moment to realize he meant Jenny and I. I said nothing nor moved an inch. A table blocked his view of me and Jenny was safely out of sight.

I heard a loud sigh.

“Look,” he said, “the people here are no good. Do not mourn for them. They take people. Good people. Make them bad. My cousin was good. Once. Now he’s a honey head. Now he’s dead…” Pooh trailed off. His English seemed to get slightly better as he talked. Perhaps it had been awhile since he spoke it.

“In Motherland!” he shouted in a near roar, “Pooh and I…grow up arm in arm. Paw in paw. Eat real honey. He come here. Addicted. Women bears all around. I shoot everybody in the other room…to come for you…”

Something wasn’t adding up: how did he know we were here? Why had he come for us? What did he care? I kept my mouth shut.

“Probably you don’t know why I come,” he said, “and this is why you stay quiet. I have inside contact. She is still alive, I left her okay. She did not go bad with the changes. She said new people come in and they go to Pooh. So I knew I had to come…so I shot them all, every one of them.”

“Is…is that all of them?” says Jenny and my heart drops. Was she believing this gibberish?

Pooh turns towards her voice but doesn’t open fire.

“No this is but…a small part. Pooh was…small potato…just someone for fun. For gas you see? He run this whole thing. And all the people here…they were no good. You must know this. I kill nobody who wasn’t bad.”

Jenny stands up and I nearly faint.

“I believe you,” she says. “There was something just off about this place. Something I couldn’t stand.”

Pooh nods as she walks over to him.

“It’s all the bad things the imaginary…it’s all stuff in the head that people think up. It is hard to explain but a guy some thing or somebody some force or something make it change to bad. So much of it all is bad now. Only a little bit still good. I still good. A bunch of us still good. But even my cousin…he could not resist…” A sadness in his voice convinces me of the legitimacy of the situation. I stand up.

Pooh jerks his gun towards me and pulls the trigger. The barrel spins in its place. I gasp.

“That wasn’t funny,” I said.

“Not funny,” he says, “lucky. Out of bullets.”

“You were really going to shoot me?”

“First rule: announce yourself before showing yourself. So many bad things happen that way…”

I look at Jenny: she’s smiling a bit too wide for my liking.

“He scared the SHIT out of you,” she taunts.

“Would have you, too.”

“Of course. But you should have seen your face.” She laughs really hard. Pooh joins in. I do not.

Pooh walks around the scene surveying the dead bodies. He shakes his head and sighs: I watch a few tears roll down his furry face as he stands above the carnage, the pain and suffering he inflicted on those who he considered his enemies.

I have to concur though: I was rather glad he had taken them out as they were likely to do things to Jenny and myself which were unfathomable to consider. It was a case of…not exactly appreciating the pain and suffering of others. But knowing when your own personal safety and comfort was more important than moralistic blathering after the fact.

Pooh looks down and sees some blood splattered on his vest. He takes out a rag and wipes as much of it off as he can and then throws the rag on the ground. He cries for a few more seconds before he stops.

“Are you okay?” says Jenny.

“Is hard…to shoot friends…”

“Tell me about it,” she says, apropos of who knows what.

“Well, now what?” I say.

Pooh looks towards the big heavy doors that lead outside. He sighs a huge say and turns back to look at us.

“By now, more should be in there. To get us. They wait. We won’t let wait no more.” He kicks open the door and thousands of incredibly freakish creatures stand in the room where the carnival once raged. They look mutated: green, long necks, sharp teeth, diamond sharp (near as I can tell) claws. They all turn to look at us. Pooh screams, drops his guns and unsheathes the two long swords crisscrossed together along his back.

“We ready to fight or die NOW!”

I’m so not ready for this.

Read part six and all other parts before continuing.
“Pooh?” says Jenny as the door opens. An overwhelming shine of light overtakes me as the doors open and as it fades, slowly, the items in the room pop more and more into view: strange chairs in the shapes of apples, hanging vines that may (or may not) be completely fake, tight ropes stretched tautly between two poles that sit on opposite ends of the room (with fire juggling acrobats performing flips on the wire) as well as walls filled with the type of pop art that blessed the psychedelic age (endless album covers of first, second and third rate psychedelic bands are among them, carefully framed with lights lovingly shining up on each, casting odd shadows on the ground while Ralph Steadman-esque paintings take up whole walls, intricate, disturbing and obviously drug fueled.

In the corner, an ancient record player tucked in a corner creaks out old time jazz in a tinny, unappealing tone. The record keeps skipping (“my baby left me ‘scratch’ my baby left me ‘scratch’…”) and nobody seems keen to stop it.

“Why hello there,” a soft, light voice purrs out from behind the wide, inward swinging doors of the room. Robocop pushes me to the ground as Jenny walks next to me and helps me up. Robocop pushes the doors close and locks them. We turn to the source of the voice.

Winnie the Pooh reclines on an intricately designed and luxuriantly decorated personal bed. Young, female teddy bears feed him grapes. A tight, long strip of rubber is tied around his upper arm, stretching down to the floor. His eyes are hazy and distant yet dangerous.

“You seem to think that you can come here…and get my honey…” says Pooh, reaching down and grabbing a huge, cartoonish looking honey pot. The word “honey” is emblazoned across the front. He opens the top and pulls out a huge plastic bag filled with…well, it’s not honey.

“Nobody gets my honey…” he says, handing the bag to teddy bear gal who smiles, giggles and turns to the stand sitting next to the bed. She opens a dresser on the stand and pulls out a box, carefully reaching in the box and pulling out a hypodermic needle.

“Uh…” says Jenny as the girl bear carefully fills the needle with Pooh’s “honey.” Pooh stares at the needle and pulls the rubber band around his arm tight, lying back on the bed with a grin. The woman bear injects him with the needle, pumping the honey into his veins.

“Fuck yeah,” says Pooh as his eyes close.

Robocop walks over to Pooh and props him up. He whispers something into his ear. Pooh just smiles and laughs.

“I don’t have time to deal with every third rate ding-a-ling that hops their way down the rabbit hole…where is Rabbit?! Rabbit?!”

Robocop whispers in his ear again.

“Right forgot: too much honey. It gets us all in the end. Christopher Robin gone. Too young. Piglet on the street corner…too much…not enough honey left in the world for me, Stanley,” says Pooh. Robocop nods grimly.

“What the fuck is going on?” I say.

“Language, pleaaaasssse language,” says Pooh as his head rolls back on Robocop’s hand.

“No swearing,” says Robocop, pointing his gun at me and pulling the trigger. Click.

The girl bears take Pooh from Robocop and begin tending to him: back rubs, sponge baths, stretching his limbs and whispering carefully into his ear. Pooh smiles and rubs their hair and backs as they speak.

“My girls…my teddy girls…they’re the best, don’t you think so Stanley?”

Robocop nods.

“Do you want one, Stanley?”

“I have no use or need for a teddy bear female,” says Robocop.

Pooh laughs that high pitched, grating laugh that is his trademark.

“Right…no man only robot…down there, right?” says Pooh reaching for areas on Robocop that no teddy bear should ever consider.

Robocop gently pushes his hand away.

“What about these invaders?” says Robocop, pointing to Jenny and I. “They have disrupted our harmony.”

Pooh shakes his head and sighs. It takes him a few moments to answer. Nobody dares to interrupt or push him to hurry.

“Do what we always do: integrate them.”

Robocop nods without passion, excitement, fury or joy.

“So take him to the lizard quarters?”

Pooh nods.

“And her to the sewing area?”

“Of course,” says Pooh.

“Wait what the…heck do you mean…lizard quarters? And sewing area?” says Jenny.

Robocop looks at her and his facial expression changes slightly to a more mournful look that fades away as quickly as it appears.

“The lizard quarters…they will take him, operate, make him a lizard acrobat. You, they will sew up to be a teddy bear concubine for Pooh.”

“No way! I could never do that!”

“You have no choice!” roars Pooh, standing up on his bed. “We replace your brains with fluff. He will be a great ‘fire lizard’! One time performance! Set him on fire as he jumps from the top of the complex and onto a bed of spikes! The blood flies for hundreds of yards!”

Pooh is just starting to rant and foam at the mouth when the door behind us kicks in. Everybody turns to stare, including Jenny and I.

A small, brown bear stands in the doorway, draped with guns, ammo belts and other heavy machinery. He is a cartoon come to life, a bit more crudely drawn then Pooh but with a more realistic “bear” look to him that makes him seem infinitely more real.

He begins screaming what at first sounds like gibberish but which I quickly realize is actually the harsh, barking tones of a rather rural form of Russian.

“Who the fuck is that?” I say.

“Winnie Pooh!” says Robocop.

“My insane, communist cousin…” sighs Pooh.

Winnie Pooh continues to screech Russian insanities as he opens fire.

A snap shot of “Winnie Pooh” moments before he opened fire.

Read part five before continuing.

The gate opened as we stood cowering before it. At least I cowered. Jenny just whistled as it descended.

“Awesome,” she said. “This looks and feels so real doesn’t it?”

“I think it is real,” I say as the rush of air from the gate slamming runs over my face. Robocop waits for the gate to settle and he then leads us over the wooden gate. He is still holding my arm and it’s starting to really hurt. I look down to see bruises on my arm. Jenny still walks, completely unhindered.

“Bruises,” I say and nod my head at Robocop. He squeezes harder and I yelp in pain.

Jenny laughs. “Don’t talk back to him,” she says. “He’s tougher than you.” A strange suddenly suddenly comes out of Robocop’s mouth. It’s a grating harsh sound, a bit like a high pitched whine of a generator and the bark of a dog. I realize he’s trying to laugh and feel a shudder go up and down my spine. Robots should never laugh.

We walk into the castle and it’s a huge, sprawling edifice to strangeness. The rows are lined with statues of various pop culture characters from my past: Walt Disney, Bill Hicks, Rodney Dangerfield, Leonardo the Turtle, Teddy Ruxspin, Pam Grier, Doogie Howswer, Susan Sarandon, Miles Standish, Lenny, Lionel from “Dead Alive,” Johnny Ramone and much more. They are all set in stone and appear to be in agony. A low hum surrounds us in the air as a low “thump” of a drum appears from nowhere. The floor is made of loose fitting cut stones that seem to have been hastily thrown together. The rest of the castle is typical castle stone. But bright pink with pink torches cutting through the darkness at regular intervals.

Jenny whistles loudly.

“I have a hell of an imagination,” she says as she pulls out a pack of cigarettes from her purse. Robocop sees them, grabs them and cruses them between two fingers.


“No smoking,” he says without breaking his stride. She frowns and sticks her tongue out at him from behind his back.

“I saw that,” he says with the firm authority of a kindergarten teacher. My arm is turning black and blue in his grip but at least it’s numb.

We pass past several hallways that seem to stretch off endlessly to the left and right. Each is lined with regularly spaced doors. We also pass doors where I can hear strange sounds. Sometimes it sounds like music. Other times it sounds like chanting or odd chatter. Some of it is rather inhuman and low pitched. One room sounds like Cthulu ripping space and time in half. A black ooze seeps underneath the door.

“Don’t touch that,” says Robocop as he jumps over it quickly. We follow suit.

“Why not?” Jenny asks.

“Just trust me on this one,” he says. I look back over my shoulder as the hallway fades. It seems we’ve been walking straight for an incredibly long time. Suddenly, Robocop makes an abrupt left turn down a random, non-descript hallway. I shout as we begin walking down this new hall.

Even stranger sounds come from behind the doors in this hall. Most of them sound like the odd, strangled gurgle of a baby eating strained peas and having too much fun with it. Jenny has gotten very quiet as we walked, sniffing the air with an odd expression on her face. A stench erupts around us that reminds me of the time I was at a dump for three hours in 100 degree weather. Just as your nose got used to a specific smell, a new one arose to take its place. It was a smell you could never “get used to” in any way.

We walk down the hallway so long that I feel blisters breaking out on my feet. Jenny is breathing heavily and getting irritated. Robocop hasn’t corrected any of her foul outbursts. I don’t get it: she is the reason we’re being taken wherever we are going.

“Hey,” I say, looking at Robocop, “where are we going?”

“To the king of the kingdom,” he says, squeezing my arm.

“The king?” says Jenny sharply.

“Yes the king. He built this kingdom.”

“Yes, one would assume,” I say, beginning to limp.

“Three hundred!” shouts Robocop out of nowhere and stops. It’s so abrupt that I nearly fall and Jenny does. She skins her knee and cries out in pain. I try to help her up but Robocop pulls me back and watches her struggle to stand.

“Damn it,” she says. “This fucking sucks.”

“This door,” says Robocop, pushing me towards it and letting my arm go. I open it up and am awed by the largest, steepest staircase I have ever seen in my life. He grabs me by the arm again and walks upstairs, Jenny following.

“Why don’t you run away?” I say.

“I’d shoot her in the back,” says Robocop.

“That’s not very gentlemanly!” Jenny says.

“I’m a robot,” says Robocop.

No arguing with that. We begin trudging up the stairs and what seems like several hours pass. Both Jenny and I struggle to match Robocop’s pace. If I slow up, he squeezes my arm. He ignores when Jenny falls behind which I think bothers her more than me getting my arm squeezed.

This process repeats itself endlessly. We reach the top of the stairs, walk down a hallway endlessly, find a random door (sometimes quickly sometimes slowly) and walk up endless flights of stairs. All the hallways are identically designed and impossible to tell apart. I’ve lost all track of time.

Suddenly, we come upon a gigantic door that is obviously our destination. It is surrounded by diamonds, pearls, rubies all that “fancy” stuff. I strain my eyes to read the name plaque above the door. Jenny strains too and then laughs loudly. She falls to the ground, holding her stomach laughing. My eyes are secretly awful so I can’t quite make it out until I move a little closer.

“Mister…Mister Sanders?!”

A soft, lilting, gentle voice drifts from the other room like a butterfly on a gust of wind.

“Bring the criminals in, Robocop.”

“Yes Mr. Sanders,” says Robocop.

“Please,” says the voice, “call me Pooh.”

To Be Continued

Read part four before continuing.

I hang my head as Robocop leads Jenny and I through the streets of the circuit. The events of the past few hours race through my head, struggling to coalesce into some sort of sense. The more I think about it though, the less sense it makes, the more confused I get. The people around us continue to perform as we walk but they slowly turn more and more inhumane. It’s hard to explain: they still appear human but slight changes mar their visage as we move.

For example, one woman has ears that are nearly as large as dinner plates. They aren’t the kind of lobes you sometimes see on people that wear heavy gauges in their ears. Those I could handle more readily as I can understand that. Hell, Jenny has two large gauges in each of her ears. She nods her head softly as we walk, seemingly not noticing any of the oddities that are engulfing us.

“How can you be so casual?” I say.

“Huh?” she says, turning at me with her eyes half open. If I didn’t know better, I’d say she was stoned out of her gourd. However, I have no idea how that would be the case. The people around us stare as we walk by, as Robocop clanks and chimes as he walks. The whole circus is alive with the sounds of performance but you can still hear Robocop above all of them: it makes no sense.

“You just don’t seem…affected by any of this,” I say.

“Oh, you mean the circus and the Dig Dug and all of that?” she says with a slight, wry smile. It is becoming more and more clear to me that part of her is really enjoying what we’re going through.

“It is becoming more and more clear to me,” I say, “that part of you is really enjoying what we’re going through.”

“Why’d you say that twice?” she says and I realize I’m thinking out loud again.

“Just answer the question.”

“Oh sure,” she says, “I’m enjoying it.”

“How can you enjoy the insanity that we’re going through? We’re being led through a sprawling, unending circus that exists inside of a hospital that we fled to only moments after escaping my exploding car. A car that, need I remind you, was inflated by Dig Dug, an 80’s arcade character.”

“That’s what’s so fun about it,” she says.

“The insanity is fun?”

“Of course,” she says with a slight laugh, “crazy dreams are better than boring dreams don’t you think?

“You think this is a dream?” I say. Robocop clenches my arm tighter as we walk. I feel bruises breaking out on my arm.

“Damn it don’t squeeze so hard,” I say. Robocop squeezes a little bit harder and then releases his grip some more.

“Although I have no reason to show you mercy,” he says, “as you have violated the law, I will momentarily relieve the pressure on your arm if it will stop you from talking so much.”

Jenny laughs out loud and digs through her purse. Robocop is not holding her arm but she isn’t attempting to flee. She’s going along with this willingly without a fight: apparently, I can’t be trusted.

“Damn right you can’t be trusted,” she says pulling out some lipstick. She smears some on her lips, puckers them up and laughs again.

We walk quietly for a moment before I remember my question.

“So you think this is a dream?” I say.

“Of course it is,” she says. “I have wild, vivid dreams like this all the time.”

“But if this is a dream,” I say, wincing from the pain in my arm, “how do you explain how I’m here at the same time?”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, how are we dreaming the same thing at the same time?”

“Who says we’re dreaming the same thing at the same time?”

“How else could we be here at the same time otherwise?” I say.

Jenny laughs and shakes her head. She rubs her hands together and continues to giggle. She seemingly can’t get enough of this situation.

“Who says you exist at all?” she says. “As far as I know, you’re just a dream boy. In fact, I know you’re a dream boy. Because I’m dreaming.”

“But I know I exist.”

“Yeah but I don’t know that,” she says.

The thought humbles me into silence.

As we walk, a large building begins to emerge on the horizon. It’s obviously huge but exists only as a tiny dot on the horizon as of now. As we move through the streets (and it feels as if we’ve been moving for hours and hours, with the people around us turning more and more inhuman. I’m afraid they barely look even human at this point, more beast than man) it becomes clear to me that we are heading towards the building.

“What is that building?” I say, nodding my head. Robocop squeezes my arm a little harder.

“It’s central processing,” he says. “It’s where I’m going to book you.”

“Central processing?” I say.

“Looks more like a castle,” says Jenny and she’s right. The towers stretch high into the sky, seemingly trying to touch the wind and clouds, capturing it up and holding it all for itself.

“How poetic,” says Jenny. I look over at her as she lights another cigarette. Robocop doesn’t stop her. She nods towards Robocop. “I think he’s got a little crush on me.”

“I feel no emotion,” he says. “You smoking is of no threat to me.”

We walk in silence as we finally reach the gate which lowers slowly as we near it. It’s surrounded by a moat filled with alligators, piranhas, and doberman pinschers with gills. It’s incomprehensibly surrounded by palm trees and coconut trees lined up in rows and columns along the sides.

“Bitching,” says Jenny as she stares down in the moat frothing with the fury of a waterbound doberman. “This is my best dream ever.”

To Be Continued