Thursday, April 5, 2012

These are the days of EL RANCHO TEXACO ..... This is the end?

Tachyons produce minute bursts of illumination. It was as if the people stepped through a warm, rich, glowing fog. And from Misses Buster to Mister Buster to Zebulon to India, they all went into the light. At first India wanted Little Davey to go with her. She is his mother, after all. But Bart is a more than devoted pop-pop and he loves the boy to no end. So it was decided that the parents would go first and the children would follow.

After a while, six people remained, Bart, his grandson, Monica, his daughter-in-law, her two children and Zeke, the ranch hand. They sat on the polished concrete floor, deep down in the bunker, listening to the upper levels fall. The acid works quite well. Monica thought she heard the muffled screams of M.I.R. minions out in the street, or maybe from even closer. 

Bart sat whispering to the little boy, telling him of the digital world to come. His other offspring, Monica's two, drew close,  for he was their pop-pop too. But they still had their mother (at least in this world) and Davey did not.

Big Daddy (Bart's father) roused himself from the Web-Without-End. He hopped through the electro-magnetic portal, jumped down onto the black leather ottoman, leaped to the floor and squeezed through the slightly opened door.  Determined holograms apparently can do that. Those in the passageway were  startled by his presence. Bart looked over and simply said - Daddy?.....................Johnny waved his tiny (but strong) arms in the air and yelled - Yeah, 'Daddy,' 'Daddy.' Come on, you dumb, son-of-a-bitch! What the hell you waitin' for? Send 'em in. Send 'em in! (manically pointing upward) Commies is comin! Commies is comin! How the hell can you not know that!?.......... But then he remembered they lacked the obesity of knowledge available to those in the digital universe. How could they know that M.I.R. forces and their Empire of China advisers were only three houses away? Loot the treasures. Tear the women. Burn the men, then burn the women too. Tearing, in itself, was obviously not enough.

So in a numb and desperate daze, Bart surrendered his grandson to the tiny hologram and Little Davey went in through the door. When it was over, his pop-pop stumbled in to bring him out. He carefully carried the little boy and laid him down between his mother and father, 'safe' in a nearby storage room. Then he covered them all with blankets and said a prayer. The four remaining souls watched as he silently walked passed them and entered the tiny room. 

When it was over, when it was done, Zeke got up to get him. Bart's body belonged with the rest of them. But before the loyal ranch hand  could provide that service, a small, but powerful explosion shattered the reinforced ceiling and a squadron of Red Guards (dressed in what we would call 'haz-mat' suits) rained down on them. Guns were drawn. Some form of 'red hots,' I suppose. Hands went  up and off they went. Yet Zeke is cagey. He thinks fast. And in the last moments, just as they were being pushed and shoved toward a huge bonfire, he spoke up and yelled - No! No! No! We're not Texacos! We're not Texacos! I worked there! I worked there! Here, here, here's my bar-code! Here's my bar-code!.......And he showed them the tattoo-like symbol on the inside of his forearm.  A sargent, or  perhaps a junior officer believed him, so the 'liberated' peon, plus his woman and their pups were led away and made to wait along with a few other trembling souls, standing by the rubble of a rich man's ruined home. They stared, wide eyed, as well-connected 'Trooper' families were clubbed (not quite to unconsciousness) and thrown up into the flames. Some fought. Some scratched. Some screamed. Some begged. Some ran. But it did not help. They were clubbed on the spot, doused in gasoline (what else was it good for these days?) and lit up right where they lay. The air was thick with grease. 

But Monica and her two children survived. Zeke survived too. And when they were led off, the half Tuva-Tuva fetus, secure in her womb went with them.

Mars is a rough place. What can I tell you? But if you've been with us from the beginning, you already know.


And on the other side, in that digital realm, the family sat on the porch of their beloved Polvarosa, watching the fine-winged horses glide across a clear, blue, sunset sky.


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