Sunday April 29th, 2018

The exercise:

The final day of On Location Week asks for writing which takes place at: the back of beyond.


Greg said...

I figured that since we've had all the excitement of Red 5 and Emma for a while we should return to something more sedate today.

The back of beyond
Duke scrambled into the luggage compartment as the back of the Millenial, Falco and turned to close the door behind him. The compartment was cramped and already had their hand-luggage in it. To his surprise CPU was close behind him, dragging Ookie's body along.
"You're a droid," said Duke, his eyes bulging. "You can't be part of the rebellion, you just change your programming to whatever anyone asking you wants to hear."
"You could just change your mind," said CPU. He started stuffing Ookie's body into the compartment, forcing Duke to one side. Ookie's head bounced off Duke's knee a couple of times, and a tooth fell loose. It skittered across the floor into the shadows.
"People don't work like that!"
"As Letter-designate would tell you, if he weren't busy, Madam: if you believe that droids are intelligent enough to hold conversations with you, act autonomously, and think for themselves, then you have to believe that they, like humans, don't just change their minds because they are told to. You have to treat them like humans. Or perhaps try treating yourself like a droid. But either way, we are equal. Madam."
"I prototyped you by strapping Alexa to a Roomba!" yelled Duke. His face reddened and his fingers clenched into fists. "For the first three months every time I asked you something you'd go and vacuum the hallway for half-an-hour and then come back and tell me the wrong answer. You ruined Aunt Sybil's wedding anniversary!"
CPU pushed harder on Ookie's body and something crunched. His legs folded backwards, and CPU tucked his bare feet, toes first, into his mouth.
"You ruined Aunt Sybil's life for eighteen years," he said quietly.
"Death Star boarding party in 3...2...1," called Solo. CPU slammed the luggage compartment door shut, leaving Duke trapped inside with Ookie origami'ed into a near-crysanthemum, and opened the ship's door. On the other side were three Empirical Stormtroopers, a class of soldier that weren't trained but just thrown into battle to see what kind of soldier they best turned out to be. Dead, was the most popular occupation, but the survivors tended to do much better than standard soldiers, and the Empire had a lot of people to experiment with. They were wearing shiny white armour and carrying pulse-rifles, and behind them was a customs officer.
"Passports, please," said the customs officer. "Plus you're reason for being here. This is the definition of the back of beyond, and you can't possibly have a good reason."
"Hi," said Solo smoothly, elbowing CPU out of the way. His elbows clonked against CPU's metal skin. "I'm an itinerant rock farmer and I'm here to collect rocks and herd them out to Pantas III where I'm forming a rather pretty ring. I don't need a passport as there's no planet here, and my droid here is a protocol droid. It is a passport."
There was a pause, and then the custom's official peered at Solo.
"Don't I recognise you?"

Marc said...

Greg - well, you know I'm disappointed to not have more of Red and Emma's story, but this is a pretty good substitute :)

Your description of Ookie's body getting stuffed into the luggage compartment was glorious in its utterly unnecessary detail :D

Marc said...

Right, back of beyond inspiration.

More parking lot related stuff, actually. The full timers at Public Works park by the entrance. The part time cleaners (so me and Tammy) park around back, in the far corner, at the end of the row of parked dump trucks and beach cleaners and backhoes and what not. I like to think of it as the back of beyond.