So going back to collect all my poetry also got me digging through my old (old, old, so very old) fiction. I'm talking stuff that predates even the poetry. So 2003, 2004, maybe? And some of it is actually... surprisingly good. So I have decided to do a little something I like to call the Way-Back Machine
. I figured I'd post a snippet of something old (old, old, so very old), every once in a while, and let people laugh, cry, sigh in exasperation over what I wrote when I was a kid(ish). Who knows, maybe this will even get me to pick up old story ideas and revamp them. (Wait, that's what I did with the Space Dragon story and it's consuming my life, why would I wish that.)
Anyways, this is the first installment. A selection from a novel called Something Biblical
(yes, I used a Muse lyric for a title, I was like 14
and I've always been terrible at titling things - then I used lyrics, now I use pretentious Latin). The story was about a man who helped genetically engineer child-soldiers. I was... a morbid child, okay, this was the kind of thing I wrote.
The rise of tiny bodies. Puff-pink embryos dancing in butter cream ambrosia. The carousel of life in glittering test tubes, sparkling, flashing, lovely revolutions. Imagine, the little voice said, Imagine how much better. Henry reached to pluck the little test tube up, held the vial at arm’s length, turned it slowly, wonderingly, eyes glittering. The white label, narrow and immaculate, flashed the embryonic number, 768-2656, pronounced in tiny black lettering, trembling lovely in violet-wash light.
The very soft humming of incandescent bulbs and righteous silence. The Conductor stood, soft and godly, among the revolution of a thousand, thousand tiny bodies. Needing only the flash of a Martian hand, the flick of a stranger’s wrist to direct the half-human orchestra. Oh, how he did depend on them, these savage men, these ruby-eyed natives, who bloomed here among the blood-blue lights! How queer their movements seemed to the imprisoned eye! How eccentric! How peculiar! Come now, quiet, take the needle in your hand. There, a flash, a prick, a pump of ruby hormone, embryonic twilight. Lovely. Simple. Now it’s done.
The Conductor withdrew his hands, released limp fingers, let the needle fall and spin, an arc of softly glowing light, jumping on the blacktop table. His hands. How strange. How long since he’d last looked at them? They were withering, curling, shrinking strangely in albino flesh. A few drops of ruby twilight glistened on the fingertips. All the passions of sunset boiled, squeezed, pressed down to a few tender beads, a chemical microcosm. The War won in half a sentence, in words unspoken. Floating somewhere ungodly and divine.
ETA: I just found notes for a story I wrote about the same time as this one that described the story as "a nihilistic fairy tale." I'm pretty sure I didn't even know what nihilistic meant at the time. XD