Mark Ethridge’s Picture Choice: 2
Title: If It’s Just A Dream, Let Me Dream (Part 5)
Blue woke me, “It’s time.”
I pulled on the armored suit and connected an extra power pack to the back. “Ready?”
Blue and three other of the blue humans nodded, “Yes, general!”
It was best to make such ventures during the flares, when my humans couldn’t be outside without armor such as mine. The ultraviolet radiation levels were something our anatomy wasn’t designed to handle, but Blue’s people were impervious to it. One of those evolutionary things.
We moved as a group, at some stupid speed, far beyond what my humans could run. It was another natural gift Blue’s people had. The exoskeletal nature of the suit allowed me to keep up with them. We crossed a flat plain, several miles wide, then entered a forest of purple and black trees, with leaves that never fell. The leaves grew, and grew, to staggering sizes.
Another couple of miles, and we reached a road, built by my people. Pavement, paint, curbs and all, right through the trees, with no consideration for the trees, or how long they’d been there, the lives that depended on them, the flow of chemicals and minerals between the trees. No understanding of, and no care for nature.
It was an ugly scar on an otherwise stunning landscape.
We paralleled the road for three miles until we arrived at the edge of a clearing filled with buildings. Buildings from my world. Rows of factory-made houses, the ever-present stores and shops of the corporations of my people. And the ever-present military compounds. Cameras were everywhere. So were drones.
“Your people take security seriously.”
“My people live in terror of their own shadows.”
“We’ll be visible on their surveillance systems.”
Ah, the things Blue’s people didn’t know. “We’ve been visible to them since we reached their road.” It was true. My people lined their roads with sensors, both to control the flow of traffic on those roads and to monitor all access to those roads. Any vehicle, any footprint, any road kill. Anything would be identified.
I was content in letting Blue and her friends know my people didn’t build automatic defense mechanisms into their roads. We’d tried that in the past. It never ended well, usually resulting in roads filled with dead people. But, eventually, we’d figure that out, after we’d killed off enough of ourselves, and we’d arm the roads. Until then, we depended on sensor systems to tell us what was happening on the roads, so we could respond appropriately.
“Next, we will encounter the dogs.” I hated how my people used dogs. Cannon fodder. We’d made them smart enough to carry weapons, and perform basic military actions. We’d turned them into an almost endless supply of Marines, doing our dirty work for us, so no humans lives were risked. We didn’t care if a zillion dogs died in the process.
The dogs would reach us soon. It was time to move.
“Everyone know the plan?”
All Blue’s people nodded. We all split up, Blue and two of her people went left, along the edge of the settlement. The other three went right. I marched in like I owned the place, and used the armor’s lasers to fry every camera and drone I could find. It was more than I could see, the armor’s sensor systems found them for me, it’s aiming systems never missed.
I moved toward the closest retail site. It was time to cause chaos, panic. and despair. For my people, the best way to get their attention was to attack their economic infrastructure. That’s what I proceeded to do.
The dogs would arrive soon. But I’d be ready for them. I had a few surprises in the arsenal of my armor. It wouldn’t be long before my people learned that.
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Mark woke up in 2010, and has been exploring life since then. All his doctors agree. He needs to write.