Chris McPherson

Zarron-6, an android of superior strength and intelligence was preparing to engage in battle with a group of five Tarks outside his favorite watering hole, The Electric Car, - a retro 21st century place. Zarron-6 didn’t appreciate android jokes, and certainly did not appreciate inter-oid jokes; after all, he lived with humanoid Tracy. But, Zarron-6 could take the insults. It wasn’t until the Tarks spilled his favorite drink, a parnon-bomb - one part Crystal Sea water from the planet Calamine and two parts vodka from the planet Earth - and started shoving a blaster in his face that Zarron-6’s superior brain became overloaded. It was time for Zarron-6 to kick some serious ass.

Simon, a young man in his early twenties who fancied himself a science fiction writer, ripped out the piece of paper he had been writing on, crumpled it, and threw it towards the garbage-can situated in the corner of his kitchen. He let out a melancholy sigh and stared at the crumpled balls of paper around the garbage can that hadn’t maintained the correct aerial path.

“Absolute shit,” said Simon.

Simon liked to write, and Simon liked to drink. He figured that most good writers drank, so Simon drank a lot. He thought that there was no better way to win a short story contest sponsored by a vodka company, than to get the sponsor coursing through one’s veins. Simon was often wrong about a lot of things.

Simon poured himself a drink into a stained coffee mug with a picture of Spiderman on the side. Simon thought about the vodka adds he had seen in magazines. He thought about his older brother Ken. Simon couldn’t get the image out of his mind. ‘Of all people, why you Ken?’

When Simon was 16 and Ken was 20, Ken had taken his brother to see his first strip show at ‘Fannys.’ There, before Simon stood Pyro Pam, a woman clad only in a black leather thong, who wielded a flaming red torch to match her stunning hair. Pyro Pam would do the usual fire eating tricks, but near the end of her show Pyro Pam would roast marshmallows on her erect nipples, then proceed to feed them to members of the drooling audience. After they were both simultaneously fed, Simon on the right and Ken on the left, Ken leaned back in his chair and slapped his brother on the back.

“A family that eats together,” said Ken with a mouthful of marshmallow, “is a family that sticks together.”

Simon laughed so hard he blew marshmallow out his nose.

‘What’s the time? Twenty after nine, shit. Maybe I should call the McDee-man up.’

Simon picked up the phone and dialed his buddy McDonald’s number. After five rings the answering service picked up, “If this is Simon, quit feeling sorry for yourself and come out and join me. I’m at the Oak having fun, not sitting around writing about Dana Scully having group sex with ET and Darth Vadar, or whatever you write about. Anyone else, I’m at the Oak. Leave a message.” He hung up. The message was from last week.

Simon sat back down at his kitchen table. He thought about Tracy. He missed her hips. She had an incredible ass. A Smirnoff ass, thought Simon.

Zarron-6 was hunched over his drink in The Electric Car, wondering how it was possible for an android to have his nonexistent heart ripped out. He stared into his drink, his third parnon-bomb, and thought about Tracy’s humanoid ass. It reminded Zarron-6 of the two moons of his home planet - Xrant.

Rip. Crumple. Toss.

“How could she leave me for him?” asked Simon, speaking to his cup, speaking to Spiderman. He got up and dialed his brother’s number. No answer, no machine.

Simon missed Tracy’s smile. He missed a lot of things. He had missed a lot of things. If he could do it again, he would do it differently. Simon looked at the cracking plaster on his kitchen wall.

“I’m living in a dump,” said Simon as if he’d just noticed.

He went to the refrigerator, found a jar of pickles, and fished one out.

“How could I have fallen in love with a woman who thought that Robert Heinlein was a manoeuvre to prevent choking?” asked Simon to his friendly neighborhood Spiderman. Simon sat back down.

Zarron-6 could hear the distinct sound of humanoid Tracy crying out as he entered their living quarters. His superior android body reacted with lightening reflexes. Zarron-6 leapt over the couch and was moving fast down the hall towards the bedroom. He could hear Tracy moaning. In a fluid motion, Zarron-6 opened the door and entered the room prepared to do battle with whomever was torturing his fiancée. Zarron-6 was not prepared, not for this. Tracy was on top of Zarron-7. His silicon brain could not compute any understanding. “I upgraded,” said Tracy as she continued to bounce up and down on top of Zarron-7.

Rip. Crumple. Toss.

Simon poured himself another drink. He hadn’t spoken to his brother Ken since it happened seven months ago.

Simon got up and walked over to the kitchen window and inspected his plant. It was dry as a bone. Grinning, Simon pretended to pour vodka from his mug.

“Eh? Want a drinky pooh? Eh, Mr. Plant?”

Simon pulled back from the plant and gave it a dirty look for not responding. He brought it over to the tap and gave it a good soaking, then replaced it in the window.

Zarron-6 was tired. He was tired of his superior brain. The memory of humanoid Tracy was so clear, she might as well have been in the room. No matter how many parnon-bombs he drank, he could not forget. Zarron-6 cursed his creator for giving him such a perfect memory. Zarron-6 wanted to be human, he wanted to forget.

Rip. Crumple. Toss.

Simon got up, washed out his Spiderman mug, and went to bed.

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