Wednesday, April 8, 2009

A Bus Ride: Episode I Part 3

The question of what happened to Adam is answered. New questions arise and the reader will have to wait for the answers. The episode ends so that another, in good time, may begin.

Could Adam die? Wasn’t he already dead? Yes, he was already dead. Dead wasn’t the right word; he didn’t die again. He reset. That’s a more appropriate way of looking at it. He awoke, just like he had after seeing the elbow and the ass, after he was crumbled up with the other passengers on the bus. He woke up to the commands of a man pulling him from a bed by his hair and throwing him into the ranks of a line going through roll call. What had been built of the pyramid no longer remained and all that anyone could see was sand. Of course, the self-inflicted wounds remained, left scars and joined all the others already residing upon his body.

That was the last time Adam tried to kill himself—he only needed one instance of that to learn his lesson. There was no escape for him. So he spent his days working and building the structure he claimed was impossible for humans to build so many times at so many parties. He found that the stones weren’t that hard to move on barges floating in water, or when they slid on greased logs, or when they were placed in some of the ingenious contraptions he had at his disposal. Levers were employed and the way the pyramid was constructed, the manner in which they stacked the stones, allowed them to spiral upwards. When this wasn’t enough to get the job done, he and his crew built a ramp with a rough slope of 1/4. It was hard, grueling work, often accompanied by massive thumping headaches from sun exposure and dehydration. He was spared of cutting the stone out of the quarry for the most part and only had to spend a few months doing that. He learned how to work with the copper tools and how to shape the stone, and more importantly, how not to handle it. It was always a sad moment when one of the stones cracked after having had so much care bestowed upon it and so much time spent moving it. Not only had he wasted time and effort when one of regular blocks became irregular, he then had the added task of clearing the half-ton chunks of stone away from the worksite.

When Adam wasn’t hating his coworkers he envied them: they got to die. He saw them come and go. Time passed slowly. No seasons ever came around to change up the monotony. The only thing he got to look forward to was completing the pyramid. He could remember the day when the man-made mountain reached a height where it cast a shadow back to the complex of huts early one morning. He wanted to celebrate but that was impossible, out of the question. Adam thought that maybe this, the changing pyramid, would be something new for him, something to break the monotony, but alas, the change was too slow, too imperceptible to notice. He would have to draw on memory that the stack of stones piled with such perfection weren’t always there, that there hadn’t been anything but sand there once before. Twice before, he realized with a shudder.

Sometimes Adam would try to engage in conversation with his coworkers but they wouldn’t have any of it. They were too busy speaking about things like escaping the bonds of slavery, or a more lenient ruler, or better working conditions, or learning the magic of reading—pipe dreams really. It made Adam sick to hear such talk, such weak pinko talk, even when it was clear it was in his best interest to wish for those same things. It never dawned on Adam that the only one who shared his viewpoints were the ones beating him senseless—the work-lords.

Adam once spoke against his coworkers, disagreed with them in the open. He gave one of the rants he was apt to give when he himself was a boss, and how he missed that. The feeling it gave him made him almost feel free, like a weight equivalent to one of the thousands of stones he had help haul up the ever growing pyramid had been lifted from his chest. His coworkers just stood in shocked silence. That night, however, the shock had worn off. They burst in on Adam grinding away at himself and dragged him, kicking and screaming, to the center of the room. They threw him down on his belly without any concern for the rigid protuberance sticking out the front of Adam and when he landed on the ground he could swear he heard a pop, much like the sound his throat had made when he stabbed it with the copper chisel. If he didn’t hear the sound, he definitely felt it, and his dick was never the same after that night. But Snoppen wasn’t thinking about that at the moment because these men, the ones he had dared speak against, had brought with them torches. They used the fire that he kept to his back and would cast the convulsing shadow in front him to light the torches and burned him with them, never saying anything, just holding him down and burning him repeatedly. This was long ago, before we caught him doing just what they had caught him doing, and explains the last set of scars on his back: those round, hardly healed wounds.

Ever since they had burned him in the middle of the night his coworkers had a nickname they preferred over Immortal. They called him Queerbait Birdshit, for when they were holding him prostrate and burning him with their torches they noticed a stain or odd birthmark of some sort on his rump that appeared to be bird shit, or a wad of manseed spread about his ass, never before noticed.

Well, the time went by, at least it will for us in recounting these events, but it must be kept in mind that it passed ever so slowly for Adam. The tedium never became a routine, the work always changing in subtle ways. He would outlive his coworkers, their lifespans being rather short in comparison to the work-lord who had it easier than the rest of them. Eventually the passing on of the name Queerbait Birdshit from one slave to another ended and he was just plain old Immortal again. The work-lords would eventually die and a new young one would replace the old one, just when their whip’s sting had lost some of their previous bite due to old age and old arms. They would die and their strapping young son would step in and take to his job with extreme vigor, the bite of the whip stronger than ever before.

Snoppen did finally get to sleep with the work-lord’s daughter. Long after her father had died and she herself was an old lady, having outlived her husband and was the old mother, grandmother in fact, of the current work-lord, a powerful old dowager, she had snuck into his room one night and caught him like everyone catches Adam at night. The embarrassment never diminished despite the numerous intrusions he suffered and she smiled a toothless grin, licked her gums and pounced on Adam as well as any 80 year old, syphilitic senior could. Even though Adam was disgusted by the frail skeleton in stretched leathery skin, giggling not so much as a means of mirthful flirtation but as a mocking laugh at the deformities of Adam’s scarred, callused and crooked cock, he could not help but react to her caresses, his libido overpowering his revulsion and nausea.

"Make me immortal, Immortal," she whispered into his ear. Her dried, chapped desert lips nibbled on his ears and her sagging breasts grazed against his unaging chest. Her tongue was parched and rough like a cat’s, yet he would not push her away. And finally, after she had her way with him and he was soon to finish himself, she rolled over, gave one last laugh while pointing at the scarred man and died. He went limp and couldn’t even finish himself off in his corner before his hut was raided and the body of the old matriarch was found. It goes without saying that he was punished like never before, this time forced to undo much of the work on the pyramid himself after having received the whippings.

O’ how we’ve wasted time on Adam. I wish I could say that other characters won’t get as much attention as Adam, but I’d be lying. Many will have much shorter stories but a few, one in particular, will get even more time bestowed upon him than Adam here has gotten. But we’re not on them yet, we’re on Adam and we’ll spare ourselves with the dreariness he was daily facing and the narration will now pick up its tempo.

After around 6000 slaves and 35 or so work-lords had expired helping and guiding Adam with his construction project, he finished. The last few years spent disassembling the scaffolding and rampways didn’t feel like work, because Snoppen could see an end in sight. What was to come afterwards he hadn’t a clue but he knew something was coming. And so it did.

The next morning after the completion of the pyramid he woke up and waited for the shout for roll call, but no such shout came. He walked out of his hut and saw the grand structure there before him, the morning sun obscured by the huge arrow pointing heavenward. The base was worn from the sand and wind, having been completed long before the small crew of forty some slaves plus Adam finished the top; but it was beautiful, nonetheless.

He felt the giant talon that passed down from father to son fall upon his neck, but it didn’t squeeze and drag him to the post like it had every other time it fell upon him. It was almost a pat, a display of camaraderie, as much as a slave driver can exhibit in any case. He had with him a scroll and unrolled it as he positioned himself in front of Adam, between him and the completed pyramid. He cleared his throat.

“The one called Immortal, the man who never ages, Queerbait Birdshit.”

Adam shuddered and hung his head in shame when he heard this second name even though it had easily been eight hundred years since he had heard it last.

“The one called ADAM SNOPPEN,” the work-lord stumbled over this name, it never having been used before. “See before you what is possible by the hands of humans. See what can be done when one works with your fellow man. When there is a wealth of knowledge and no dearth of information, be mindful that there is no excuse for ignorance. Forevermore, let the lesson be learned, let the knowledge you gained through long and trudging work be remembered. Let the scars upon your body remind you of what you have learned among us in the desert. Learn that…”

Adam couldn’t believe his ears and it was too much for him to take. Was he really getting a lecture after having completed this task, after having spent no one knows how many days withering under the sun lifting stone after stone, working his hands raw? The work-lords hadn’t raised a finger to help though plenty of whips had been raised. Adam stopped paying attention to what the work-lord was saying, rambling on, reading from the lengthy scroll. And then it happened. Snoppen hadn’t even said it, just thought it—a moment of silent rebellion, of thinking a defiant thought. With the quality of a child being lectured about some wrongdoing, he thought to himself: I may have built this one but I still think aliens built the…

The work-lord stopped reading. Adam didn’t even get to finish his thought and for the first and only time he witnessed a work-lord hang his head, displaying a sign of submission, and the large man before him sighed. Just then the sun peaked over the top of the pyramid and the bright light blinded Adam. His vision was completely bleached out. He raised his hand and tried to block it out but it was to no use. Eventually the brightness faded, but instead of his eyes finding the scene he had just seen before him, it kept getting darker and darker until it was pitch black. That was when he heard the shout to wake up and get in line for roll call. Snoppen’s gut sank and he jumped to his feet, rubbing the crust of sleep and sand from his eyes, oblivious of the morning rush of blood erecting his broken and bent phallus, and ran outside to find nothing but flat desert and sand as far as the eye could see.

Adam spoke little the next thousand years. Well, a thousand minus a century or two, since he had learned not to reset his life and so completed his task a little quicker than he had the first time around. He had also learned not to sleep with the withered old work-lord females, but whenever one presented herself he couldn’t resist and so received his whippings and had the momentary loss of having to periodically undo a few days work every 20 years or so. This was Adam Snoppen’s hell but we shan’t make it ours. We’ll spare ourselves the narration necessary to give some sense of how long a time Adam endured his stay there in the desert.

Eventually, after many moons, after countless days under the heavy sun, after sweating rivers worth of perspiration, after thousands of pounds of skin lost to shedding and peeling from one round of sunburn to another, after practically an infinite number of nights of Adam trying in vain to pump out the irrepressible urges that built up in him daily but had no outlet save old withered women who spent their days of privilege under luxury provided by their work-lord fathers, husbands, sons, tempting and teasing him with their ripe bodies and alluring glances in their youth and haunting him with their senile and demented evening romps before their deaths, always resulting in a brutal bout of corporal punishment, eventually he stood there before his work-lord again.

And with all his will, all he knew to be true, after all the lessons learned, Adam most certainly no longer believed in aliens or that any had ever built any pyramids. He swore to it, affirmed it in any way he could imagine, thought it silently to himself and asserted it out loud to the proud and smiling work-lord standing there between him and the completed pyramid. Not only did he claim not to believe them, he truly did not. He would be the first to raise a voice in opposition should someone claim what he had once claimed, having learned through the long and painful process of building them himself, seeing how such a feat was accomplished, not just once to completion, but twice. He believed it more than anything else.

The work-lord finished his lecture this time. When he finished the sun crested the peak of the pyramid once again and blinded Adam. He couldn’t muster the energy to scream, to sigh, to cry. His knees buckled and he collapsed there before the work-lord, his memory able to recall what had happened centuries ago. But the work-lord kept his smile and there was no sigh from him. He walked past Adam and patted him on his scarred back. Winds arose and sand flew into Adam’s eyes. He tried to block out the sun and was successful this time, because it wasn’t the sun. A space ship descended before Snoppen and he felt the talon claw of his work-lord grip his neck, pick him up and drag him toward the vessel while he was frozen in fear and confusion.

And so, after approximately two millennia toiling away in the desert Adam found himself on a space ship with creatures beyond description being hauled off to some interstellar wormhole, some warp where the concept of time ceases to exist and suffered the most excruciating tortures and procedures. Here is where we shall leave Adam until we find it necessary to return to him, for he has another stage yet before we will be done with him.


not undecided said...

Must say I dislike the preview thing you're doing, only because it shows up in my reader when you publish, but not when you edit. I end up missing the real updates. However...not my blog, just looking forward to it.

Bazarov said...

I hadn't thought of that. I do it when I've written out a rough draft and have it completed but haven't revised it at all yet. I'll have this one done tomorrow morning (the tenth) even though I said I'd have it done today. Too many things came up, sorry.

not undecided said...

'saright ;-). I know the feeling.

Schmutzie said...

You are being featured on Five Star Friday!