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Also, check out Unknown Transmission for the other half of the story.

Speggs Like Us

December 8th, 2017


The TV is on.

Was I asleep?

There’s a movie playing. It’s “Spies Like Us,” with Chevy Chase and Dan Ackroyd. It’s at the part where they dress up like aliens to spook the Russians and take control of the ICBM. Spegg is sitting on the stool and watching it and eating a sandwich. He’s laughing. He’s actually laughing.

He’s covered in blood.

It’s cold.

I’m fading.


November 28th, 2017

Spegg dips his finger into the syrup where my chest should have been and holds it to the light. “But this black shit will keep you whole for now.” The goo drips down his long, bony finger. It stiffens, then leaps from his knuckle back to the exact spot he’d taken it from. “Can you believe I only had a few grams of this stuff just a few hours ago?”

From the side table, he retrieves a small, empty zip-top bag. I quickly recognize JAXA’s five-pointed star logo printed on the label. Spegg squints at it. “Na-no-black. Self-replicating nanobugs. They can patch up almost anything,” he says, then flaps the bag between his fingers. “Another fine product from JAXA’s skunkworks. Hey, just like me!” he adds, then crushes the bag in his fist.

Outside, a curtain of snow slides off the roof, briefly darkens the window, then lands on the ground with a thud. Spegg glances at the window. “Finally starting to warm up around here.”

After a moment, Spegg turns his attention back to me and pats me on my one good knee. A spike of pain shoots up my leg and suddenly the Nanoblack surges toward the spot and appears to boil around my knee until the pain subsides. Spegg titters mischievously. “Sorry about that, brother. That probably stung a little, ay?”

He tosses the crumpled zip-top bag back on the table. “Anyway, this sorcery will keep you alive until we can find you some replacement parts.”

Replacement parts?

Spegg appears to notice my reaction and smirks. “Well, these bugs can hold you together but they’re not going to grow you a new heart or a fancy pair of legs. We’re going to need to find you some organ donors.”

He stands up and kicks the stool into the corner. From his pocket Spegg removes a remote control, presses a button, and a large flat-screen monitor against a far wall flickers to life. A video feed appears on the screen, what looks like footage from a security cam. It’s positioned from a high vantage point, probably atop a telephone pole, and the scene is a wintery industrial town, bustling with thousands of people. But it’s no regular town. We’re looking at McMurdo Station.

“Behold, the last livable city on the planet,” Spegg says. “And our hunting grounds.”

All The Dead Things

November 23rd, 2017

My eyes are open. I’m in a cabin, lying on a bed, on a bare, ancient mattress, surrounded by old, wooden crates nailed to the walls. The crates are stacked on top of each other, crammed with packages and jars and disintegrating, rusted cans with faded labels that read, “corn flour”, “wholemeal biscuits, and “cabbage”. At my left there is a large, wooden crate with “SYRUP” printed on it in all caps. An ancient iron stove is crouched at the foot of my bed, its metal chimney rising up from its oven and poking through the roof. Ruined clothes hang from the ceiling on lines suspended by narrow, iron hooks.

I know this place. I totally know this place. But I have no business being here. This is Ernest Shackleton’s hut.

What the actual fuck.

A face ebbs into view. A gray, oblong face with a thick, bulbous nose, and nasty, ragged teeth. And those eyes. Those, giant, dumb eyes.

Of course.

“Hello, Chikushou.”

Fucking Spegg.

I try to grab him. Try to grab him and do all kinds of horrible, violent things to him and that face of his…. but nothing… nothing happens.

“Don’t try to move,” Spegg says. “You’re not whole yet.” He passes by the window, momentarily casting a shadow over the room, then gestures at my body. Or what remains of it.

I look like fucking road kill. Like the butcher had a go at me, but toddled off halfway through the job. Almost nothing is recognizable. Unless you count head cheese and ground chuck as recognizable. Okay, a bit of my leg is sticking out of the mess. And my right hip. That’s there. I spy a heel, and that little bony nub that sticks out on the side of the foot? What is it? It’s like your foot’s elbow. I dunno. But I still have one of those. Everything else is missing, though. Missing, or just meat.

But there is something else down there. Something else mingling with what’s left, something that makes no sense whatsoever. Something filling the gaps between the bits of meat and hip parts and foot elbows; something thick and black and shiny and syrupy. And it’s moving. Like, undulating. Like it’s doing some kind of work. And there I am, just checking it out… as fucking Spegg looks on with his big, fat eyes.

What the fucking shit is this shit?!

“I saved what I could,” Spegg says. “But I had to cut away all the dead things.”